How brands are using social currency to turn their product from commodity into camaraderie.
You’ve got product. They want purpose.
You’ve got a commodity. They want camaraderie.
Turns out, what people want most today, is uncannily similar to what they’ve always wanted. Only for thousands of years, those needs used to be supplied by community, culture and organized religion. In today’s scattered and individualistic society, those moorings have been severed, leaving a profound, gaping hollow.
Savvy brands are stepping in to fill that void, building causes and cultures around themselves. The lines between firebrand and market brand are quickly blurring, with fans spontaneously forming cliques, clannish member-only clubs, and dare I say, cults even. As a consumer, your entrance ticket into this club is not a fraternity pledge, or a well-placed connection. It’s the mere purchase of a product that you can wear or hold or display to prove your status as a card carrying member.
And what does allegiance to this club bring you, you ask?
The same soul-satisfying pleasures of any other social clique. A sense of belonging. Of purpose. The stirrings of pride. A platform for defining one’s place in the world. A centering force. A sense of conviction and identity.
Brands that are built on passion inevitably attract like-minded souls.
Those who admire and take pride in the vision of a visionary—idealists who had the guts to put their money where their dreams were and bring their vision to the masses. While the members of the club go about their daily lives; the relentless grind that keeps them from dreaming bigger or doing more, they’re tapping into the feel-good energy of a leader who has.
And with their purchase and possession, and their loyalty and their advocacy, they’re giving their souls a language and a voice. No matter that they’re communicating a message, not crafting one. They’re changing the world and themselves one purchase at a time.
Stoke it, fan it, feed it, flame it.
And then go get ’em.
Great post, Elke!