Room to BreathePosted by Dustin Britt on January 6, 2012 Share
Disciplined adherence to strict branding rules; logos applied to as many surfaces as possible always in the same manner; experiencing a brand in the same way over and over again – these used to be the rules that equaled unparalleled strength in a brand. Today the rules have changed. Great brands are nimble, and yet still focused – flexible, and yet still dogmatic. They allow for the consumer's voice while still influencing the conversation.
Coke did this in style when they embraced a user-created Facebook page as their own (rather than shutting it down, crying copyright infringement). Coke maintains brand guidelines that keep three core elements intact – the red, the script, and the contoured bottle shape – and then leaves room for expression and variance.
I love a recent article I read by Fast Co. that puts it this way – ‘Branding Is About Creating Patterns, Not Repeating Messages‘. Marc Shillum went on to say:
Consistency in human behavior is not derived from repetition alone; it is about the formation and recognition of coherent patterns…Patterns are the way our brains perceive actions, thoughts, memory, and behavior to ultimately inform belief. They allow for differences while creating a whole.
Brands still need consistency, but in a consumer-driven era where a brand's every action is on public trial – that consistency needs to be expanded to include room for expression.
Relevant brands breathe.