Differentiate through innovation

No items found.
A statement challenged by BRND WGN’s Director of Strategy, every day.

In the 18 months I’ve been at BRND WGN, I’ve attended more than 50 workshops and spent over 150 hours discussing business challenges, marketing strategies, and where we should be competing in the mind of our customer.  

During this time, I must admit I have got into a habit of asking one vital question: “What makes your brand different?”

Unsurprisingly, nearly every company I have worked with, claims to innovate. However, when challenged further, this turns out to lead to more of a dig-deeper, challenging discussion.

By definition innovation is ‘something new or different introduced’. Wework innovated co-working spaces, Tesla innovates in its motors, and Apple created the iPad. We’re talking about real, groundbreaking innovations here, ones that disrupt the old models of working and services, and ones that challenge traditional thinking.

But a simple Google search of ‘we innovate’, has resulted in over 26,500,000 hits. That’s a lot of innovation dialogue! Let’s be clear, innovation isn’t making an existing product better than it already is. As a result, it feels the overuse of this current buzz word means the true innovators are losing their gravitas.

Brands that excite and resonate with customers are ones that engage on a personal level. We think a company can brand itself in new and exciting ways that engage with customers without having to ‘innovate’. This could mean executing a simple, creative idea.

For example, Casper set out to sell a mattress in a simple box. It’s a mattress. In a box.

But they’ve made the customer experience special and, in just two years, the brand has been valued at $555 million (Source: Investopedia).

It's not to say innovation isn't important - we have to keep conversations going to accelerate innovative ideas, implement them, and deliver results. But there are so many ways that could make your brand special for the customer. And ultimately it’s about how our brand or product might stand out amongst all the noise.

And there’s something more amazing about making something better, and inspiring others to do so.