Truth, Perception and Fantasy

Distinctive Brand Assets don’t create a brand.

They’re simply triggers that get our neurons firing.

Logos, symbols, colours, characters;

Pay-offs, pack shapes, jingles, George Clooney.

We recognise, recall and remember the brand that owns them.

But the trigger is not the gun.



Brands live in the mind through their associations.

Mostly unconscious and emotional.

Not the ones you can find in your brand onion.

More ‘a style and image that customers want to be a part of’.

Your brand’s unique kind of cool. The book ‘Brand Seduction’ nails it: ‘if mattress buying can be cool, anything can be’.



As we all know, anyone who tries to be cool isn’t.

Apart from The Fonz, obviously.

Attraction isn’t what people say about themselves.

Far better to rely on what they do, how they act, who they associate with.

Brands say a lot, but we’re not listening to the message.

We’re looking for clues to a deeper, unsaid truth.

Better than truth: a fantasy.



All advertising is subliminal.

The message part is optional.

Well, almost. Style, mood, tone and personality are critical.


Our unconscious brain is full of it. Made of it.

It creates our guiding force: gut feeling.

Facts, figures, product benefits: not so much. .



A 50 year-old brand has created a lot of communication.

The vast majority of it ‘meta’.

Big brands stay big because they’re hard to forget.

How can new brands get a look in?

Branding and design are your secret weapons.

Distinctive Assets and meta-communicators.

The trigger and the gun.


Here’s a talk (12 minutes) with more ammo.



We hope you enjoyed this edition of Unpredictable.

If you did, please pass it on.

That’s also meta-communication, of course.