From a commodity to a relevant brand

It is pretty likely that one day traveling in a car, you have seen endless corn fields by the side of the road. Corn as far as the eye can see. But after the first moments of astonishment at seeing so much of the same, the fields end up looking all similar and they are not that fascinating anymore. As a result, the next corn fields become invisible to you.

This feeling of ‘more of the same’ is also experienced by customers when they want to acquire a commodity: when there is much of the same, it gets less interesting and it doesn’t seem relevant to them. When it comes to selling commodities (such as raw materials or simple products) the prices are usually low, as they depend on the relation between supply and demand.

In order to avoid a price decrease, the product needs to be differentiated from those of the competitors. The traditional way of differentiating from the competitors has been highlighting the product’s competitive advantages. However, even when provided with sound arguments about the product’s unique positive features, clients often decide to buy the one from the competitors. This is because most of the time people don’t make decisions consciously but non-consciously.

If we want customers to prefer our product – and pay a bit more for it – the commodity should be turned into a brand. Of course, this doesn’t mean just putting a label with a logo on it! Now, based on neuroscience, we know how brands are created in people’s brains and, consequently, which is the best way to create a relevant and differentiated brand.

In his article ‘Brain-pleasing Branding’ Lluis, m+f=! co-founder, explains based on neuroscience the process by which a product or a service becomes a strong mental representation in people’s brains. But not only that: he also explains how to achieve the ongoing customers’ preference for a product. This means that the customers keep choosing the product again and again, even when it is not on special offer.

You can access the complete article on Lluis’ LinkedIn profile, by clicking here.

Zara reinvents its own concept of fast fashion retail

For some years now, people are living in a new OnOff context characterised by the constant use of smartphones (we call them ‘e-bodies’). This affects all spheres of our lives, including the purchase of fashion items which are increasingly bought via web or app.

Zara – the company that invented fast fashion retail about 30 years ago – is aware of this new OnOff context and will launch a new retail concept in a flagship store in Westfield (London) in May 2018.

One of the consequences of purchasing fashion products via the internet or the app is that the customers do not always keep all the things they have previously ordered. Therefore, a large portion of the purchases are returned. This implies an additional cost for the selling company: it has to “revitalise” the returned garments and then reintroduce them to the logistic-commercial flow so that they can be acquired by other customers.

Considering that Zara’s business model is based on the freshness of its products, every time that a garment is returned, its useful commercial life is shortened.

Time management is utterly important to Zara. Paradoxically, the more their sales via the web/app increase, the more Zara’s business model is jeopardised.

Zara addresses this challenge with a new OnOff retail concept whose strategical impact could be pretty important.

If you want to read the complete article that Lluis has published on Linkedin, just click here:

This is how we “cook ideas”​ at m+f=!

– May I come in?
– Of course! The door is open.

From the corridor, through the glass walls of the room, you can already see pondering faces and a hand running over some paper on the wall, leaving behind words, circles, lines and arrows as it goes. “I like it”, someone states…

If you want to know more about how we cook ideas at m+f=!, don’t miss the chance to read Lluis’ post:

This is how we “cook ideas”​ at m+f=!