If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and flattery will get you everywhere, perhaps that’s why all of the best brands of our age are all becoming a bit, well, samey.
And, If green is the new black, organic is the new everyday, and hybrid is no longer just for those who prefer to knit their own yoghurt, I have to ask, what will come next as the real differentiators for our current mega brands that we all look up to?
There is no doubt that any trend is just that, a trend. And trends come and go. I’m not even slightly saying that Howies, Innocent or Rachel’s have copied each other, it’s just that as these are at the front of the curve, the rest of the market will be following. Every new brand we are being asked to look at, needs to add a little hug here and there, a bit of planet kissing and some stout green nosing for good measure.
They are all drifting towards a level of sameness that will slowly see the current heroes be caught and potentially overtaken. Unless they move their own cheese and get themselves into a new and worthwhile position before the others even get there, they will no longer be the top brands in their own sector, let alone any other sector.
I think a change is a coming. I believe that brands grow so fast these days that they are likely to die just as fast. In the perfect market that we now live, where all of the people have all of the information a new brand can literally come out of nowhere and achieve the status of our current heroes.
So where will this brand come from?
A few pointers that have been gathered over lots of episodes of Trendwatching and lots and lots of reading around the subject.
1. It will be from the quality end.
This recession ain’t ending fast, so people will buy fewer things but better quality things, that give them the status they seek.
2. It won’t be needed, just wanted
Everyday is mundane. It will be a treat that is a little naughty and a bit of a backlash against the goody goody era in which a 4×4 is the work of the devil. Once we all survive the Swine flu myth, we’ll want to kick back and live a little.
3. They will restrict their supply
If you achieve worldwide distribution overnight, you kill the golden goose. Leaving them wanting more, works.
4. It won’t be green
Like any normal distribution curve, the green revolution will fall off and the responsibility for greenness will be thrown back to the manufacturers. The public will simply expect them to do the green worrying for them.
I’d love to know what people think this new brand or new market could be and whether they agree with my four points above.
Answers on a patent application would be most welcome.
Thanks for the image of his niece Sobrina to Corre Madrid. See more work here.