Quitting the Quo: A Blog Series on Disruptive Branding

in Branding Strategy & Trends | by Admin

Quitting the Quo: A Blog Series on Disruptive Branding

Post #1: The Concept of Disruptive Branding

The disruptive kid in elementary school was sent to detention; a ringing cell phone in the movie theater sends a wave of eye-rolls your way. But today, we are uprooting disruption from its negative context, and promoting deviation from the status quo; standing out from the crowd; an exceptional, out-standing, loud, notable, attention-generating type of branding that gains undying customer love: DISRUPTIVE BRANDING. This blog post is the first of a series of posts that will look at disruption in a new context- from the perspective of a brand that wants to be noticed and irreplaceable in the market place. Brands that have performed as untouchable in their industry have implemented disruptive branding by being a brand that interrupts the norm. In fact, these disruptive brands are so much better than other brands that they essentially create their own distinctive niche in their industry. The essential component of a disruptive brand is that it is more than just the product or service that it provides; the brand has a unique, mentionable set of characteristics that sets it drastically apart from other brands. In the branding world, it is key to embrace and optimize the potential of disruption.

Just in case names like Apple, Zappos, WalMart, TOMs, Dyson, or Virgin don’t totally convince you that disruptive branding is the path to brand superiority, a quick glimpse into consumer-psychology suggests another explanation. Consumers pass by millions of mundane things each day; they are more likely to notice the disruptive brand- let’s say, the trendy pair of shoes that offers the “one-for-one” promise- than the products whose brand consists of nothing more than the face value seen on the shelf.  A disruptive brand offers more than just the ordinary good or service; its excellence and distinction lead to purchase- then to consumer satisfaction- consumer dedication- and voila! The disruptive brand’s desirability spreads like wildfire.

I analyzed a few key disruptive brands, and found what it was that they all seemed to practice untouchably well. In this post, we will start you off with just two of the core components of a disruptive brand:

  • Quality. To have any sort of solid foundation, your brand must be linked to the best product quality.  The brand must be functionally dominant in its respective industry in order to have a foundation for being outstanding. Apple gets away with a simple, high-class branding platform because their products work so well. Consistently positive customer experience perpetuates; with such strong customer sentiment, Apple locks in a loyal audience. To maintain this advantage, Apple consistently innovates to set them apart in the technology industry.
  • Emotion. A second necessity to keep in mind while planning to shake-up the industry is emotional appeal. When people see your brand, they see the message and the feeling that the brand gives them. Let’s take Starbucks for example. Sure, I could make a cup of coffee at home… but there is something about “just grabbing some Starbucks” that sounds so cool and classy. Going to Starbucks is an experience; a place to meet with friends or fellow business people; a place to be greeted with picturesque price marquees, a distinctive smell, and a soothing coffee-shop feeling; a place to have your name written on your cup… There is a type of trendy sentiment that comes with Starbucks that makes it the brand that stands out from all others.


There is so much more to what makes a disruptive brand so distinctly successful… and this is only the beginning! Keep an eye out for the next few posts, where you can read more details and gain more insight about disruption.