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Five Ideas To Win In The Attraction Economy


Five Ideas To Win In The Attraction Economy

In commerce we are nearing the unthinkable. Efficiency and solid performance are becoming table stakes, a bottom line license to compete. Your challenge is to get beyond table-stakes.

I believe love and inspiration through business can change the world. This is the true advantage. It lies beyond respect and leadership. It lies in the territory of action and transformation.

Tom Peters says “Act now think later – then at least you’ve got something to think about!” And that’s exactly how consumers work. No one dictates to consumers now. Power left manufacturers in the 80s, swept through media in the 90s, visited retailers and – propelled by technology – has rocketed into the hands of consumers today.

The Consumer Republic is a place of crystal transparency, attention scarcity, digital time travel, extreme collaboration and explosive choice. People today have to make more choices in a single day than a caveman did in a lifetime.

Digitization of life and atomization of choice have pulled the world through the Information Economy, the Knowledge Economy, the Experience Economy and now – incredibly – the Attention Economy. In the Attention Economy brands became saturated and commodified. All fries are crisp. All cars start first time. All beer tastes good, unless you live in America!

Now the value train has left the Attention Economy. In the Attention Economy consumers were asked to pay attention and choose – again and again. That’s over. Product is prolific. Decision making is impulsive. We’re in The Attraction Economy. In the Attraction Economy consumers are saying: “You’ve got three seconds to change my life or I’m gone.” Exposure to 5000 commercial intrusions a day is hell – no matter what planet you’re from.

•Interruption marketing is repulsive – you’re murdering consumers.
•Permission marketing is convulsive – you’re asking consumers. No one has time.
•Attraction marketing is impulsive – consumers come looking for you.

Leading the search are Inspirational Consumers. The passionate advocates, storytellers, moral guardians, radical optimists, co-creators and on-line motor-mouths. The MySpace, Cyworld, Ohmynews and eBay acolytes. They work for you for free.

In the words of Bob Dylan: “revolution is in the air”. In the emerging culture of participation, consumers are producers. Inspirational consumers are reversing the flow of dreams, ideas, goods, and messages.

Steve Jobs is right: “creativity is just connecting things.” Use your silicon edge to find and unleash Inspiration Consumers. Or come second.

Here are five ideas to win in the Attraction Economy.

Brands were about rational ideas with emotion clipped on by the ad department. To avoid commodification, business has to put emotion out in front, at its centre, on its sleeve, in its heart. Emotion trumps reason. From Virgin to Versace (and Viagra!), people are about 80% emotional and 20% rational. Choice is emotional, more emotional than we ever dreamed.

Consumers today know all, see all, judge all and expect all. They want their world uplifted by the brand. They want emotion that sweeps them off their feet. Neurologist Donald Calne keeps it simple: “reason leads to conclusions, emotion leads to action.”

Brands got rich on respect. That’s over. The crunch question: “Is it better to be respected, or loved and respected?” No contest. From Tel Aviv to Taiwan, everyone wants both. Products to Trademarks. Trademarks to Brands. Brands to Lovemarks. Take a brand away and it is replaced. Take a Lovemark away and you’ve got a protest, a consumer rebellion.

Mystery. Metaphors and dreams. The flow of past, present and future. If we know everything there is nothing to surprise us, to delight us, to dazzle us, to change us. We need stories where we don’t the ending.

Sensuality. The five senses. Sight, sound, smell, touch, taste. Portals to the emotions. Sensuality is at the heart of the design revolution. It’s rewriting the rules of retail. In 85% of purchases only the chosen product is handled.

Intimacy is empathy commitment and passion. In-your-heart Invitation not in-your-face interruption. The small touch. The perfect gesture.

TV has been the greatest selling medium ever. It’s moved on. It’s now massive, miniature and mobile. The bigger picture is the screen. It’s everywhere. It’s the meeting place and the market place. Home and office, aeroplane and store, car and kiosk – in two billion pockets and rising. Global mobile sales rose 22% in the 3 months to September.

Welcome to the Screen Age, a superscreen era when:

•Everything connects with everyone
•Pride and Prejudice can be sent SMS
•Your daughter’s Playstation screens military technology
•On-demand TV fills the holes in your day
•Mobile screens turn retail deserts into theaters of dreams
•A sub-$50 mobile phone can leap deserts, open markets and transform entire countries.

The big opportunity for business is not the Screen itself. It’s what beams through it. New heights of sight, sound and motion that exhilarate life. We call this Sisomo, the subject of a book I’ve just released. Sisomo is big. Sisomo humanizes technology and unleashes its emotional potential. It is about senses not circuits. It creates the most emotionally compelling communications on screen.

The opportunity is to fold technology and emotion into each other. Create sisomo content – simple powerful stories told with new dimensions of excitement, richness and interactivity. As TV becomes more game-like, mobile phones more TV-like and in-store screens more movie-like, sisomo will be the spice in the Attraction Economy.

Step it up. Start with a big idea. Small ones can’t do the heavy lifting!! Soak it with Mystery, Sensuality and Intimacy. Make it come alive with Sight, Sound and Motion.

Business is the big game, the engine of human progress. Lovemarks fuel that engine with the best of what makes us human. The role of business is to make the world a better place for everyone. From a 5 cent shoe-shine boy to a global mega corporate, who wants to do anything less? This is the unique capacity and now the great responsibility of business. And it is plain business sense. Anything less, you’re being commodified. You’re liked, not loved, maybe loathed.

Innovation, enterprise and technology are bringing all nations and cultures together. Our job is to make them a force for good. With passion and harmony, with inspiration and love they will be. This is the hour of business. Let’s stay in formation.In commerce we are nearing the unthinkable. Efficiency and solid performance are becoming table stakes, a bottom line license to compete. Your challenge is to get beyond table-stakes. I believe love and inspiration through business can change the world. This is the true advantage. It lies beyond respect and leadership. It lies in the territory of action and transformation.

The Blake Project Can Help: Accelerate Brand Growth Through Powerful Emotional Connections

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1 Comment

Vince Runza on March 29th, 2007 said

In the midst of revamping my business plan, getting a serious jump in my income for basically being myself, exhorting my fellow Warriors over at the Warrior Forum to “think outside the box” I dropped by here.

Pardon me, gentlemen, but you dropped my jaw! This particular post gave me one of those moments when I could actually glimpse the forest through all the trees. We’re all connecting in incredible ways, but the quality of the connection is being defined in ways I was blissfully ignoring.

Part of me wants to ask, “Are you a bunch of hippies who got lost in the 21st Century?” Speaking to you now as an actual former hippie, that’s high praise! Another part of me chides myself for forgetting the simple truth that love is not a commodity — it’s better than the air we breathe for our lives.

Thank you.

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