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Caspar Mason
Senior Creative Strategist
Jack Morton Worldwide
@Caspar01
“I work in
advertising. I don’t
live in advertising.”
Sir John Hegarty
I. Why ‘human brands’?
II. The problem with
human brands
III. 5 behaviours to avoid
Today…
I. Why
‘human brands’?
1. Be human
2. Be useful
3. Invite participation
4. Be shareable
5. Build community
Human brands =
The hunt for
strategic advantage
Source: CS Space
40/50s
Manufacturing
60s
Advertising
90s
The brand
Strategic Advantage in the...
Total brand
reputation & experience
Source: CS Space
Now
Every brand
touchpoint is
equal
Why
‘human brands’?
II.
The problem with
human brands
Language is
where the
rules live
Source: Gill Erault, Linguistic Landscapes
Brands face
a paradox:
Source: Gareth Kay, The Human Paradox
The more they try to
act human,
the more they risk
alienating humans.
A.
Brands
trying to
be human
Welcome to
Uncanny Valley
B.
Brands taking
the wrong part
of humanity
The promise of
personalisation
[Nutella named cans]
Technology =
Personalisation at scale
Personalisation =
Networked big data,
powered by algorithms
Anticipation
& Discretion
Anticipation
aka knowing when to start
Discretion
aka knowing when to stop
III.
5 behaviours to
avoid
1. Over-friendly
2. Nosey
3. Indiscreet
4. Clingy
5. Normative
1.
Don’t be
over-friendly
The Rush For Human Brands placeholder
Market norms
vs
Social norms
Predictably Irrational, Dan Ariely
Takeaway
Don’t be over-friendly:
Don’t pretend
to be friends
2.
Don’t be
nosey
71% believe brands
with access to their
personal data are
using it unethically.
Edelman/University of Cambridge, 2016
57% of consumers do not
trust an organisation or
business to use their data
responsibly.
Whose data is it anyway?, Charter...
68% of marketers are
reluctant to share their own
personal data… because
they know how brands
will use it.
Whose data is i...
The Rush For Human Brands placeholder
“Trust comes on
foot but leaves
on horseback.”
Johan Thorbecke, 1798 - 1872
[Starbucks hand written name]
Takeaway.
Don’t be nosey:
Be extra sensitive when
asking for sensitive
personal data
3.
Don’t be
indiscreet
Networked data,
powered by
algorithms, is not good
at being discreet.
O2 example
Takeaway
Don’t be indiscreet:
Know when to STFU
4.
Don’t be
clingy
O2 example
Takeaway
Don’t be clingy:
Just because you can,
doesn’t mean you should
5.
Don’t be
normative
[Some way of showing the range of humanity. Is there an nice way of
showing this? Maybe different-sized feet/shoes? ]
[‘Skin coloured’ plasters on dark skin]
Takeaway
Don’t be normative:
don’t assume your reality is
the only way it can be
“No snowflake
in an avalanche
ever feel it’s
responsible.”
Stanislaw Jerzy Lec, 1909 - 1966
Be careful of
the world you
accidentally create
What brands
could be
Thanks. Caspar Mason
Senior Creative Strategist
Jack Morton Worldwide
@Caspar01
Get in touch:
experience@jackmorton.com
Do...
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea
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Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea

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Brands are made for and by humans. Their greatest wish is to connect with humans. So why do they find it so difficult? From jarringly chirpy digital, social & mobile experiences to misguided content marketing efforts, brands’ (and, let’s face it, agencies’) attempts to ‘be more human' often make us cringe.

And now, algorithms and big data means brands know more about us than ever before, and with this their opportunities to ‘act human’ have multiplied exponentially. But in many cases, their brand building efforts are failing: either to be convincing or in adopting the right aspects of humanity. And in so doing they become clingy, nosey or just plain creepy.

So brands face a paradox: the more they try to be human, the more they risk alienating the humans they so want to connect with. So can brands be ‘more human’? Or more importantly…should brands be more human?

Published in: Marketing
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Brand building trends | Why human brands are a terrible idea

  1. 1. Caspar Mason Senior Creative Strategist Jack Morton Worldwide @Caspar01
  2. 2. “I work in advertising. I don’t live in advertising.” Sir John Hegarty
  3. 3. I. Why ‘human brands’? II. The problem with human brands III. 5 behaviours to avoid Today…
  4. 4. I. Why ‘human brands’?
  5. 5. 1. Be human 2. Be useful 3. Invite participation 4. Be shareable 5. Build community
  6. 6. Human brands = The hunt for strategic advantage
  7. 7. Source: CS Space 40/50s Manufacturing 60s Advertising 90s The brand Strategic Advantage in the...
  8. 8. Total brand reputation & experience Source: CS Space Now
  9. 9. Every brand touchpoint is equal
  10. 10. Why ‘human brands’?
  11. 11. II. The problem with human brands
  12. 12. Language is where the rules live Source: Gill Erault, Linguistic Landscapes
  13. 13. Brands face a paradox: Source: Gareth Kay, The Human Paradox
  14. 14. The more they try to act human, the more they risk alienating humans.
  15. 15. A. Brands trying to be human
  16. 16. Welcome to Uncanny Valley
  17. 17. B. Brands taking the wrong part of humanity
  18. 18. The promise of personalisation
  19. 19. [Nutella named cans]
  20. 20. Technology = Personalisation at scale
  21. 21. Personalisation = Networked big data, powered by algorithms
  22. 22. Anticipation & Discretion
  23. 23. Anticipation aka knowing when to start
  24. 24. Discretion aka knowing when to stop
  25. 25. III. 5 behaviours to avoid
  26. 26. 1. Over-friendly 2. Nosey 3. Indiscreet 4. Clingy 5. Normative
  27. 27. 1. Don’t be over-friendly
  28. 28. The Rush For Human Brands placeholder
  29. 29. Market norms vs Social norms Predictably Irrational, Dan Ariely
  30. 30. Takeaway Don’t be over-friendly: Don’t pretend to be friends
  31. 31. 2. Don’t be nosey
  32. 32. 71% believe brands with access to their personal data are using it unethically. Edelman/University of Cambridge, 2016
  33. 33. 57% of consumers do not trust an organisation or business to use their data responsibly. Whose data is it anyway?, Chartered Institute of Marketers (UK), 2016
  34. 34. 68% of marketers are reluctant to share their own personal data… because they know how brands will use it. Whose data is it anyway?, Chartered Institute of Marketers (UK), 2016
  35. 35. The Rush For Human Brands placeholder
  36. 36. “Trust comes on foot but leaves on horseback.” Johan Thorbecke, 1798 - 1872
  37. 37. [Starbucks hand written name]
  38. 38. Takeaway. Don’t be nosey: Be extra sensitive when asking for sensitive personal data
  39. 39. 3. Don’t be indiscreet
  40. 40. Networked data, powered by algorithms, is not good at being discreet.
  41. 41. O2 example
  42. 42. Takeaway Don’t be indiscreet: Know when to STFU
  43. 43. 4. Don’t be clingy
  44. 44. O2 example
  45. 45. Takeaway Don’t be clingy: Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should
  46. 46. 5. Don’t be normative
  47. 47. [Some way of showing the range of humanity. Is there an nice way of showing this? Maybe different-sized feet/shoes? ]
  48. 48. [‘Skin coloured’ plasters on dark skin]
  49. 49. Takeaway Don’t be normative: don’t assume your reality is the only way it can be
  50. 50. “No snowflake in an avalanche ever feel it’s responsible.” Stanislaw Jerzy Lec, 1909 - 1966
  51. 51. Be careful of the world you accidentally create
  52. 52. What brands could be
  53. 53. Thanks. Caspar Mason Senior Creative Strategist Jack Morton Worldwide @Caspar01 Get in touch: experience@jackmorton.com Download the presentation: jackmorton.com/humanbrands

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