advertising, Branding and Communications

How to make your brand successful

This was asked on Quora the other day, here is my extremely short answer.

A brand is set of ideas that are perceived. Some of it may be tangible benefits, while other would be aspirational. In both cases, in order for the brand to be successful, either of them have to be fulfilled.

For example,

  1. Apple – A person would not buy iPhone just because its a good product. He or she would probably buy it to make a statement, that they belong to a certain class. The post-purchase experience makes them believe that its really an exclusive club that they have entered, this reinforces the brand, and drives more sales, which leads to more reinforcement.
  2. Xiomi – This is somewhat a ‘value for money’ brand. This will be reinforced more by actual product. People would buy it, use it pragmatically, and recommend when it performs to the their expectations.

So to sum it up, you would need to fulfill the promise of your brand in order for it to be successful.

Internet & Technology, Technology & Gadgets

Hipsters, Apple, and Motorola

I don’t like shaving my beard. I don’t have a very dense one anyway. I don’t like wearing clothes that make me uncomfortable, and I am routinely unwilling to look squeaky clean. I like to think my tastes in music are eclectic, and I have an unquenchable thirst for the outdoors. All qualities of a hipster, right? Yet I don’t identify as one.

It has to possibly do with the fact that unlike hipsters, I have no real craze to be eclectic just for the sake of being eclectic. I openly admit that I sometimes have some guilty pleasures such as watching mind-numbing, action films. However, one thing that separates me from hipsters is my disbelief in iPhones.

Apple and iPhones to me represent a manufactured ‘alternative’ culture, that has ironically become mainstream now. Yet it has been heralded as the epitome of uniqueness. Under this feeling, there is a notion of showing off that you are ‘different’. In my mind this screams desperate, and is an act of someone who in fact feel  insecure.

I just don’t seem to fit into this culture of being ‘alternative’ for sake of being ‘alternative’. Also, I can’t bring myself to appriciate the fleeting quality of Apple products. I find them overpriced and lacking in innovation. On the other hand, Motorola has been innovating consistently for many years now, and the recent Moto Z series has great promise. Would it mean that Hipsters will shift to Motorola next? Who knows… I don’t look forward to that day since I own a Motorola.