open to ideas: Time to forget everything we learned in the past about branding?

Micael Dahlen and John Karsberg have come up with a genuinely new and fascinating idea about consumers' expectations of future brand behaviours.

This is a fascinating paper, published in the Journal of Brand Strategy, Spring 2015-2016, that reports a series of experiments testing three related ideas: consumers focus less on the past and more on what is next; consumers focus more on non-product related actions of a brand; consumers engage more with brands even before they are established or launched.

They highlight the 'nextopia' effect: the fact that consumers rated 'not yet available' products as more attractive than existing products. Across a series of ingenious experiments, they show how knowledge of desirable future products increases the number of people choosing a brand's current product. Hence, Apple's many announcements of future innovations and movie franchises as trilogies and more.

One of many implications explored by the authors is how this related to crowdfunding and consumers' investment and engagement in the creation of new brands.

Overall, these experiments stimulate lots of thoughts around how to build new brands.

Recommended reading for anyone open to thinking creatively about brand-building.


This post is the latest in our 'opento ideas' series where we point readers to fascinating ideas beyond mainstream marketing.

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