Turning stagnant brands into dynamic powerhouses was the subject of a workshop at the Anton de Kom University in Suriname this week. Primal Branding was featured in the class, according to attendees.
Primal Branding is the most effective construct for helping turn around brands in trouble. When you deconstruct a brand into its seven (7) pieces of Primal Code (creation story, creed, icons, rituals, sacred words, nonbelievers, and leader) you can identify what (if any) elements are missing.
For example, when we worked on the Maxwell House coffee brand for Kraft, few stakeholders at Maxwell House recalled that 100 years ago there was actually a Maxwell House Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. One night, a President of the United States stayed overnight at the hotel. The next morning, as the President was having his morning breakfast, the waiter came over the refill the President’s coffee cup. Teddy Roosevelt held his hand palm down over the cup and said, “No, wait! This coffee is so good, it’s good to the last drop!” Roosevelt lifted the cup to his lips and drained it.
Using the Primal Branding process (which is now ratified and promoted by the largest social engagement community on the planet—YouTube) also helps you to identify and refresh brand elements to make them more relevant and meaningful for today’s markets. Those elements can include the logo, packaging, naming, delivery processes, even ingredients.
The process also helps to identify and single out brand assets. When we worked on an iconography project for Levis, we inspired the internal teams to revision their brand, their in-store merchandising, even their product design. Similarly, when we assessed the Fig Newtons brand several years ago, the packaging was colored an aseptic yellow. A more fruit-colored palette that aligned with healthy figs was recommended—and the new packaging boosted sales into the double digits.
This process of deconstruction leads to a more kickass understanding of your brand and your brand community. The process also underlines which elements attract and appeal to your brand zealots. This is not about building your Facebook “likes” or dominating Pinterest. This is about the reality of your brand and bringing it to life, online and off.