I’ve read a number of pieces by brand planners who advocate “question everything.” Look at a problem, then look at it from many other directions. Point-counterpoint. Question everything was driven home to me early in my career with McCann using AT&T’s heavy-handed reliance on consumer research and message testing. It was healthy to listen to consumers share likes, dislikes, preferences and attitudes. I grew as a result.
But today my brand planning rigor is more fluid. I do not stop and question myself. I don’t look at the obverse. It’s a buzz kill. It kills the poetry. As a rapper might say if I’m in the “flow” I don’t want to break it. So on I go.
Clients are the ones I rely on to question my brand strategy (one claim, 3 proof planks). I like to think, after all my deep digging, marinating, cogitating and “boil down,” that all sides have been considered. And it’s time for flow.
If this approach seems myopic, so be it. But a good brand idea, a big brand idea, is usually rooted in flow, not the result of over analysis.