The ability to develop substantial brand communication has suffered. It’s not necessarily the fault of the brands themselves but seems to rest on delivery and communication methods. Arriving in the last 10 years is an unprecedented accessibility to publication and consumers. Gone is the slow burn and thoughtful presentations brands relied on. In it’s place the quick, down and dirty availability of social media and online distribution is an often careless “push marketing” frenzy. More succinctly, in a world that proposes to deliver profundity in 140 characters and relies on large images and brief quotes to provide impact and substance for consumers, the ability to create deeper, long-lasting foundations for brand building has faulted.
Brand developers and marketers seemingly have fallen for the ruse and believe replacing a story with quick-witted quips or gimmicks that gets buzz is a good tactic. The developing, painful outward messaging from brands took some time to reveal themselves as inadequate but more and more frequently, brands suffer from the result of poor execution and provide a lack of deep thought from the quick hitting, social posts. The safe guard in more “deliberate” creative had always been protected by expense, or time required for publication. So the creative investment was always substantially more from the branding side. It had to be right. Otherwise, the pain from the bad message was significant. Stripped of the initial obstacle from easy-to-access social media distribution, branding now has a propensity to publish amateur messages as well as well-considered efforts. And even the well-considered efforts feel less well-considered.
Think about your brand and your brand messaging and story. Do you simply post on a moment’s notice about your brand? Do you or your team think that every idea is a good idea because it’s there for the taking … or more appropriately, the publishing? Do you feel that the ease and affordability of taking a shot to stir up buzz is worth the negative because there is always tomorrow’s post or maybe even later today’s post to clear things up?
Brands spend a lot more time apologizing for careless messaging mistakes because they have to. The path to publication has become much faster and easier because of technological advances. And the distribution for small to medium sized business has become much more affordable and frankly, efficient. Or has it?
As you are about to hit “send” or “post” or “update” on your next social post, press release or tweet about your brand, consider the immediate impact your messaging may have. While there could be some benefit, there is also consequence. And that consequence could be negative in ways you didn’t expect or think about. With the accessibility to brand messaging, there comes the accessibility of consumer messaging as well. And mistakes, errors and slip ups from brands are picked off one by one from an ever poised to judge culture.
Branding matters. In order to create a brand that matters, you have to be deliberate, careful, plan well and understand the consequences of your affordable, easy to access distribution. Pause and think through your strategy for brand messaging. Do you simply jump at the chance because it’s there? Or do you wait for more clarity, more thought, higher quality and better results? For better branding, strengthen your brand with specific, deliberate and ideal scenarios balanced by speed—not the other way around. Otherwise you’ll find you are driven by access not substance.