Dana Severson

Copywriter | Marketer

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Building Brands One Word at a Time

Can Your Brand Benefit from Inconsistency?

By Dana Severson


Consistency has long been a linchpin in marketing strategies. The more consistent the message is across all points of contact, the more likely the brand becomes recognizable to the consumer. So recognizable that it almost controls the public’s perception of the product, not to mention turns consumers into customers — at least that’s our hope.
But with so many ways to now reach consumers, can consistency do damage to a brand’s relevancy? Can it make a brand more forgettable than memorable?
Of course, we’re not talking about a brand’s identity. You want consistency when it comes to the core of a brand. Its marketing, on the other hand, may benefit from a few inconsistencies. Not inconsistencies for inconsistency's sake, but inconsistencies born out of the medium you’re using to touch a consumer.
A consumer interacts differently with a commercial on television than he does with an ad in a magazine. The same can also be said for his interaction with web content, emails, direct mail, in-store displays, and so on. Because these interactions are so different, should the marketing be the same? Can a consistent look or message breed indifference from the consumer?
Take almost any advertisement. Nine times out of ten, you’re going to see that same ad with that same message — or a similar iteration of it — on TV, in magazines, in papers, in emails, on mailers, and in stores. After a while, won’t the consumer stop seeing it? Without recognition, you lose an opportunity to talk to a potential customer.
Rather than inundating consumers with the same message across all points of contact, wouldn’t it be better to change the message so it better suits the medium? The promise would remain the same, as well as its feel and objective, but the focus of the message would change.
Look at it this way; most products and services have more than one benefit. They also have more than one feature. Here’s your chance to spark new interest in what you’re offering by highlighting the benefit and feature that best fits that channel. That best fits that interaction. And this is just one option. 
By doing this, you create a uniqueness with each interaction. It’s new each time a consumer makes contact with your brand. They no longer expect the same thing from you and could pay even more attention to what you’re saying.
Is there a formula for this? Not yet. As more and more marketers venture out into this “risky” realm, that may change. Give it time.

So what do you think? Could brands benefit from inconsistencies? Or is it best to stay on point throughout all marketing collateral? Leave a comment below. 


This post was originally published at Beneath the Brand.


Copyright 2007-2014.  Dana Severson | Freelance Copywriter & Marketer.

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