by: David Polinchock
Love this story from Brian Collins to describe what a brand is and how it should act. He always has great examples! Read the full article for other great stories that Brian told during the One Show presentation.
On Wednesday at the One Show Festival, design guru Brian Collins illustrated the power of branding with a history lesson about pirates.
Or rather, just their flag.
Back in 1748, if you had the misfortune of being a single bobbing ship at sea when a tattered vessel with a skull and crossbones crossed your path, you knew instantly what to expect.
"You're fucked." (Collins, verbatim.)
"As you sail closer," he continued, "the brand promise is reinforced by everything you see."
A cannon fires, shots go off: the brand promise becomes brand immersion. In three hours, maybe less, the brand delivers everything it promised: death, pillage, and maybe a not-so-promising hostage situation.
The fulfillment of the skull-and-crossbones "brand promise" remained so consistent over fifty-plus years that, by the 1800s, pirates didn't even need to waste gunpowder. They had only to raise the black flag to yield the desired results (surrender, animal fear, free doubloons and maybe some teabags).
Pirates (TM!) succeeded because they connected brand promise to performance.