Here’s one. You may know some variant of it already?
Three college friends went to a music festival to see whether people would like their freshly-made smoothies. Next to their stand they placed two bins, marked ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ — and the message: “Should we give up our day jobs to make smoothies?”
At the end of the day the ‘Yes’ bin was overflowing.
And Innocent smoothies was born.
Now, maybe you’re thinking. “That’s all very well for innocent — but I don’t have a story like that”.
It goes something like this. A McKinsey man, an ad agency Account Director, and a Bain management consultant, each a Cambridge graduate, decided to start a business.
And, Innocent smoothies was born.
So, it’s actually the same story. Or a story about the same brand’s origins.
There are undoubtedly many more.
To me, the second telling seems a touch less romantic and motivational. Unless you, of course, are a huge fan of global management consultancies and ad agencies—of course you are, who could blame you?.
As a legendary Irish comedian used to say, “It’s the way you tell ’em”, and more than that.
It is about focusing on the aspects of the creation story that are essential, that informs and resonates with your mission and purpose as a brand — and will connect with your audience (the why you exist, as much as the who and how). Then it can become part of the powerful and meaningful story that connects your people and your audience to your brand.
Do you have a compelling creation-story or a simple narrative that builds meaning?
Are traditional brand strategies and guidelines are no longer as effective in our fast-paced business environment? Is it possible that simply focusing on the old ‘positioning + visual identity’ formula in isolation may not cut it?