Brand planners go about their business in a number of ways. If you’ve planned on 500 brands and identified 1,000 insights, it’s hard to go all tabula rasa on a new assignment. To quote a friend and colleague Faris Yakob of Genius Steals, there’s a lot of recombinant culture invading the planner’s work day. And this can be a bit of a problem.
Etsy is going through a bit of a hub-bub because some artisans are thought to be mass producing products and passing them off as artisanal. When brand planners do this, it also taints the work.
Brand planners look to two places for insights. The product and the consumer. If we think of the product as comprised of natural resources — all natural, all built with different DNA, different chemicals – it’ hard not to see it as unique. Deconstructed, these unique resources bring forth insights and features from which the brand strategy flows. A pizza parlor may look like another pizza parlor, an accounting firm may look like another accounting firm, but they really are all different. And by happenstance or design, those differences appeal to consumers in special ways. That’s the big “find” of the brand planner. And never forget we are creating disposition to purchase, not just packaging.
Brand planners find product uniqueness, decide if it is business-winning, then turn it into a brand strategy. (One claim, three proof planks.)
Off the shelf solutions don’t work. Every snow flake is different. Peace.