Pere is waiting for me, without a doubt he is into challenges. I proposed to interview him and he did not hesitate for a second; He didn’t ask me what questions I was going to ask him or the time we were going to need, he just told him that we would talk about brand strategy and he said “I do” while he searched his diary for the day and time to meet. When you start talking to him, you understand that he should not prepare or run away from an interview like this; he mixes security, communication skills, theoretical knowledge on the subject and passion in abundance. You realize that brand strategy for him is not a simple discipline in which he works to earn a living, it goes much further. For him, convincing agnostics about the importance of work and the impact of the brand is a mission that borders on the obsession.
R. Isn’t the issue of trademarks reserved for large companies?
P. Not at all, there are many brands, desirable not so many and I assure you that it has nothing to do with the size of the business.
R. What is a brand?
P. Good question, the great specialists in branding do not have a consensus on the subject, there are more theoretical schools and others more linked to the world of design. I get wet, I believe that a brand is an association of ideas issued by a person or a company and that seeks to be perceived in a certain way by a certain audience.
R. An example?
P. Ferrari transmits luxury, sportiness, exclusivity or attention to detail. And that neither you nor I are Ferrari clients. The brands that work well with their identity have an image according to what they intend to express.
Q. Is the brand identity and image different?
P. The identity is what the company works on, the image is what is perceived. The second is a consequence of the first.
Q. Does it often happen that a brand thinks it has one image and has another?
P. Much more often than it seems, that is why when doing a consultancy I insist that the diagnosis of a brand has to start from all possible prisms and not only from the perception of the brand’s direction, which is what I usually find. The more distance there is between what you think is the brand you manage and what others think, the more brand identity work you have to do.
Q. What are those prisms?
P. The management, the team, the collaborators, the suppliers, the target public and the general citizen.
Q. What role do each play?
Management has to understand that the brand is not theirs, the brand belongs to whoever perceives it. You can work on identity so that it is perceived as you want it to be. The members of the team are essential to understand and transfer the vision of the brand in a unanimous way, I always say that when a person from the team is in front of a client, he becomes the most important person in the company because he is the one who is representing it. If you don’t work, you have multiple images that are the product of the subjective interpretation of each one of them.
Q. And the indirect collaborators?
They are, for example, the suppliers, they also talk about you when you are not there, you must make sure that they understand and know how to explain what the brand wants to convey.
Q. Do I miss the client in everything you tell me?
P It is that the client is everywhere, he is the center of everything, he is the one who not only has to buy from us but also has to make what we do a way of understanding a part of his life. That is called creating community.
Q. It does not seem easy to create community.
P. It is not, not at all, if it were, all brands would have one, and the truth is that not all of them manage to have one. Of course, it is the best tool to avoid intrusion, competition and copying. When your brand is able to identify part of someone’s lifestyle, it becomes very difficult for someone to come and supplant you, even if it seems technically better or cheaper a priori.
Q. An example?
P. If Apple sold pants, the Apple faithful would buy pants. Because? Why Apple has managed to identify its customers in its way of defining itself. It goes beyond what they sell, it is a way of showing themselves to the world. We call it identification. When you are able to identify a lifestyle, the entry barrier for the competition is very high and expensive to overcome.
Q. You talk about faithful… It’s even scary.
P. Hahahaha, I remember an interview with the great Sasha Strauss, a brand strategist from the US, who stated that the new normality required brands to fill the void left by political institutions and religions. Societies evolve and if the paths of religions and public sectors separate from this evolution, spaces are created that brands can end up filling to satisfy the need for belief that people have.
Q. You continue, but, speaking of big brands, and you told me that brands of less caliber also have their place….
P. Speaking of brands that we all know, it is easier to exemplify, but I assure you that there are brands of less territorial and economic caliber that have managed to create that identification through proper brand identity and strategy work.
P. For example, La Fageda (yogurts) is doing a commendable job, its brand identity goes beyond the good taste of its yogurts, they transmit a lifestyle based on respect for others and nature. Perhaps you will find cheaper yogurts, that taste better or are not as caloric, but those who consume them will not change them easily. ID. And they are Yogurts!!!!
Q. Do you think Skybubbles has that potential?
P. If he didn’t think about it, he wouldn’t be here talking to you hahahaha. I am not one to accept all the proposals that come to me and I never think about my pocket when doing so. SKB has all the ingredients to create a spectacular brand image based on innovation, nature and comfort. Working as we are doing the brand identity, we will lay the foundations to create a community that sees us as a brand beyond the product we sell, that is, as a way of understanding life and identifying oneself.