Ernest Wilkins said the following about the reality modern brands face, and it’s especially true for the individual creators, start-ups, and small businesses of the world:
No matter the time of year, the public expects marketers and brands to have a cohesive and compelling message that aligns with each brand’s identity. That means for the modern brand marketer in the cultural industries, every day feels like the Super Bowl, without the lead-up or the media coverage.
In other words, you’ve got to be your own hype-machine, get all of your talking points good and aligned, and do it without the fanfare you imagine companies with marketing departments (and marketing budgets) seemingly get by default. And, to top it off, the stakes of getting things right are really, really high.
Wilkins goes on to outline how several brands are making the cash register sing in 2021. The common thread he sees is they’ve figured out how to make their companies look more human (i.e. less corporate), more achievable (i.e. easy to access and to be a part of their community), and more relevant to the moment (i.e. there’s an intentional sense of urgency and presence about them).
By studying others we can figure out what to steal for ourselves. Plus, we don’t want to just borrow from anyone, we want to steal from the best. For a curated list of examples, read his post, “Brands To Watch 2021,” and see what you can apply. The stakes are high but the opportunity on our doorsteps is massive.