Market Theory: Brand Decentralization

Nescafe_2 Recently, Nestlé brand Nescafé decided to call it quits on its corporate site and replace it with a dedicated Tumblr in order to stay relevant in the minds of younger consumers.

This allows Nescafé to approach its potential audience where they play. It also opens the brand up to more user generated content, making it feel more approachable. If you let your consumers play with your brand–creating, consumimg and modifying it to their hearts content–chances are they will consider your brand their brand. They have an investment in you, whether it is time, money or both. They’ve created a connection with that brand that will last long after they log out of Tumblr.

So what does this mean? It means that decentralization as a core design feature is no longer limited to things like bitcoin and the new generation of security protocols.

Decentralizing your brand means it’s mobile and adaptable, capable of assimilating to any social media platform and taking full advantage of the audience and tools available. Producing content to a central hub for distribution across multiple outlets is no longer necessary–this cuts out the hub. You are no longer obligated to link back to your home website, or search for that golden formula that not only interests an audience on one of your satellite distribution platforms, but also lures them back to your brand’s main website. You will always be relevant because you are always where your audience is, right there in front of them, migrating with them as social media empires rise and fall, creating the ebb and flow of online audiences.

This nomadic mindset also helps focus your efforts as far as outreach and interaction. You wouldn’t be producing content for MySpace right now, but you might figure out a way to set up shop in a subreddit or, as Nestlé has done, Tumblr. In that respect, it all comes back to building a community around your brand, being on the ground floor as that community develops and seeing how consumers react to your brand from their perspectives.

Adam Hails

Senior insights officer and cultural/behavioral analyst at Culturewaves.

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