How Bold Is Your Brand? » The S3 Agency

How Bold Is Your Brand?

I’m not talking Nike bold here. That’s off-the-charts bold. My question to you is: do you really want your brand to stand out? Or do you just want to increase your share a little?

These are very different objectives. Brands that just want to do a little better tend to avoid risk. Why? They don’t want to lose what they already have. That may be fine if brands are satisfied with where they are and, really, just want to grow a little. But that’s a sentiment I never hear.

What I hear brands saying is that they want to stand out. They want to connect with consumers. They want to be engaging and engaged with. They want to mean something. Yet they are afraid to do what it takes to be differentiated.

Take Native deodorant. Who would think it would be a good idea to send natural deodorant in crazy scents for a premium that is multiples of what you find in the grocery store? Add to that the fact that the only place to buy it is online, and it sounds like a business model doomed to failure. And maybe it would have been, if the folks at my favorite deodorant company didn’t recognize the power that a differentiated brand can bring.

Native’s brand DNA includes natural non-toxic ingredients, premium packaging, fun scents that are constantly updated, and (here comes the best part) a willingness to connect to consumers emotionally. That takes more than a Pumpkin Spice Latte limited time deodorant (yes, that is currently available). Pardon my French here, but it takes balls.

Want to break through with an email? This subject line threw caution to the wind – and probably had a pretty darn high open rate:

“This is a Jesus Scented Magic Stick” & Other Great Reviews…

By taking the most breakthrough (and potentially controversial) line from one of their many reviews and elevating it to email subject line status, Native knew they were taking a risk. The thing is, those risks can be investments when a brand is all in.

I could go on and on about the power that Native’s fearlessness has imparted to its brand, but money talks louder than words – and in November 2017, the startup online better-for-you wacky deodorant brand was bought by P&G. For $100 million. After only 2.5 years.

That definitely doesn’t stink. Neither does Native’s brand. And neither do people who wear it…


Denise Blasevick
Denise Blasevick

CEO @The S3 Agency

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