A unique spirit with different approaches
Unbranding is a new communication strategy growing in a society that is going to the personalization and union of and with a brand.
Now a days the undemanding is wrongly interpreted as the absence of a brand and the lack of the logo’s stickers. In more technical words, the absence of a strategic order of the values and visions that a company wishes to project.
It have nothing to with that! The unbranding is a disruptive, daring and a very strictdiscipline.
Starting from scratch with this strategy is not an easy task, since this does not mean not having coherence when transmitting the strategic brand discourse, which includes values, storytelling, mission, vision, etc. Quite the opposite, they are qualities that must be very internalized. Some large companies can afford taking the risky twist in searching the evolution going hand by hand with this concept of unbranding, since they have built a solvent and mature strategy that allows them to build efficient messages for their users that ends in acts of loyalty and purchase.
Branding and unbranding share the same vision of discipline and understanding: its main objective is to generate links with people; although everyone opts for a different strategic approach. We live in a society where the big companies send us thousands of inputs with an overcoming and expositive intention, moving away more and more from the small individual that consumes them. Today’s society evolves towards not being a consumer of large companies that transmit cold messages far from our real needs and lives. Some of these companies assume that a user of a specific age and situation living in Barcelona will have the same need or desire that a person living thousand of kilometers away in a totally different city and context. This is a deeply rooted in the 20th century marketing concept. These big companies might adapt themselves to the demands of different markets, but, do they communicate it? The society of now does not understand markets, but users. In the end we are citysumers, we consume cities, and we are users of a lifestyle. People who share values with others and establish relationships consequently. Make users feel part of the brand and even empower them with an apparent ownership relationship to make them become total ambassadors of the brand. The actor of a brand (the person who serves you) has to live and feel it in order to participate in it in a pro-active way and know how to communicate it to make you falling in love.
Give the opportunity to the context, the user and the ephemeral to shape the brand. Let the content define the brand at every moment. This could be a good starting point for the unbranding.
A good brand already allows us to evolve thanks to the cyclical branding methodologybecoming adaptable and evolutive according to future projections and needs without seeing any limit in it. In the unbranding strategy, its norms and guidelines are replacing and creating new and different patterns without ever leaving the strict and rigid limits established as a total margin. It does not mean transmitting disorder, but fluidity and mutation. There is a delicate boundary between the lack of coherence of the brand strategy and the success of the unbranding.
Nike is a clear example of a great brand that has evolved little by little towards the projection strategy, focusing more and more on the creation of brand ambassadors and a large community of users with a current communication that tends to the unbendingstrategy. It is a brand that make out that now it is only a symbol, a typography and an attitude; the rest of the experience is up to you. Everything is at stake.