by: Idris Mootee 

Brands
are transforming themselves and I would argue they are becoming more
and more important. They exist beyond the ads and the products, they
are trying to find new ways to get inside your home and be part of your
life in the form branded content, branded entertainment, branded
utilities and branded space. L'Equipe, the Parisian based daily sports
newspaper invented 'the tour de France' only to sell more newspapers, its
branded content with a pinch of engagement.

New
social forms have emerged from all kinds of new network-based social
behavior.  These conversations between customer that are previously
unknown to each other to the extent where over 50 million people are
able to interact in a single online space, generating billions of web
site page impressions every month. The question is how should brand
play a role here. These social webs are exploding everywhere and this
can no longer be ignored by any brand. 

The
structural nature of consumption of information and content are in a
state of flux as we enter a world where content will be increasingly
delivered through all kinds of networks that can be personalized and
entirely self-scheduled. In that world, the viewer - not the
broadcaster - whoever that may be, will decide what is consumed, when,
how, when, and with whom you share it with.

We
are in a transition from interruption and intrusion to engagement. When
distribution is trivial, unlimited, and available to all comers,
marketing to a captive audience sitting on a cough in front of a box is
the thing of the past and creating "quality" product / service / content is
paramount. Content is now a part of any product (and its experiences).
Consumers will consume only what's relevant and what entertain them
most, not what is marketed to you them in a repetitive fashion. By
providing branded experiences,

brand can extend engagement rather than disrupts it, by doing so it
strengthens its contextual involvement and connection with the consumer.

With
the emergence and convergence of the mobile phone and the internet and
location-base-system we suddenly have immediate access to our
co-workers, our friends and family members and know where they are at
any point of time. We are getting used to living in a connected age
where we naturally and increasingly draw on our participation in
various networks for information, assistance, information and support.

The
language of our post-modern world is not broadcast-branded-content
pushed to our TV box that we consume passively. This kind of
traditional marketing has become adversarial in the eyes of customers.
Customers have changed and adapted to this new always-on, always
connected, media fragmented world, where they seek value by searching,
where they are not waiting for you to interrupt them with unwanted
messaging, where they look to their peers for voices of authority. The
behavior of sharing user-generated-videos will evolve and new behavior
will emerge. What we are seeing in YouTube I
called it "socialcasting". Does this signal the end of broadcasting?
Consumer will spend more and more time interacting with each other and
mashing-up content rather than passively watching low quality content.
I
think we have yet to see the full impact of this phenomenon. This will
determine the new of our post-modern culture which I define as follow:

- Immediacy

- Flexibility

- Portability

- Permeability

- Fluidity

- Interactivity

- Mashability

- Ownerability

This
postmodern culture is characterized by the density, the intensity, and
the fragmentation of the instances of communication, by hyper-reality
that continuously creates fresh videos and meanings based on the same
signifiers, and by the incredible array of brands and products that
impose their own rules and procedures as a way of life. The postmodern
consumer thus transcends the state of being the subject positioned in
society to satisfy one's individual needs. And everything seems so
hyper-real. Please share your thoughts.


Original Post: http://mootee.typepad.com/innovation_playground/2007/10/branding-in-the.html

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