Umair Haque / Bubblegeneration
umair haque  


Design principles for 21st century companies, markets, and economies. Foreword by Gary Hamel. Coming January 4th. Pre-order at Amazon.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Media 2.0; Microchunks + Brands = Post-Branding

Fred vs Mark P on the future of media; Fred says microchunks, Mark says brands.

My take: In fact, they're both right. The problem is that this is a false dichotomy.

Branding has a big problem these days; social meaning is a commodity. We're drowning in social meanings. So smart brand strategists are shifting away from simple meanings to new things to associate with brands (more on that later).

The point is that brands themselves are going to evolve to become a kind of media that consumers choose to consume or not. Consider the rise of experience brands - your favorite masstige boutique, a la Sephora or Hollister. The brand becomes a kind of new medium in itself...

So I think what we'll - and are already seeing - is a kind of convergence of microchunking and branding. That doesn't mean microbrands - it means brands which leverage microchunked media to shift away from meanings and to newer, scarcer drivers of attention. Often, these new drivers are most efficiently leveraged at the edge - co-created with consumers.

I know this is a bit opaque; I'm working on a longer piece on post-branding, which should clear things up a bit (I hope :)

-- umair // 10:56 PM // 3 comments


Since the traditional notion of brands was largely executed as a media play, any �post branding� theory that maintains a media play foundation will have one hand already tied behind its back. A stronger foundation is to link brands to value. Thus this definition:
�Brands are avenues of value innovation in a creative engagement between companies and their customers.� This moves brands beyond the era of top-down monolith, and opens them up to customer initiative and participation. How companies architect their brand avenues, deliver value innovation, and shape their creative engagements will determine which particular brands will prevail. What is certain is that the old �missionary position� of brands is now dead.

Most companies that now depend on brands will probably find it extremely difficult to change their established brand practices. Traditional brands support established corporate hierarchies. It's only when Google or Yahoo redefine the world of brands that mainstream companies will be forced to catch up.
// Anonymous Brian Phipps // 7:10 PM

That's very interesting. And I think it's exactly right - brands have to leverage the edge as well.

The inertia that you've pointed out is the real killer - which means there's huge amounts of foom for disruption. Interestingly, all this is about as far off the Yahoo/Google radar as you can get...which is very good or very bad depending on your perspective!!
// Blogger umair // 2:32 AM

Umair -

check out - my brothers branding company - they have a great chance to be the edge difference - although admittedly - they are light on tech movements.

Point is they are a pure branding agency - believe that all starts there - i agree.
// Blogger marks ramblings // 5:44 AM
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