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Danny Turnbull: Dial up the business, not the brand


Marketers need to look back to the initial spark that started it all – connecting a humanly relevant idea and the heart of the business drives everything, writes Danny Turnbull, managing director of Gyro.

Business used to be viewed as mundane. Images of three-piece suits, power meetings and poorly written memorandums spring to mind.

This is no longer the fact. Not by a long shot. The constant, breakneck rate of technological innovation has radically altered that tired perception.

Today, business is looked at as a new frontier—one which is attracting top creative minds. Dreamers see that the bar for entry is lower than ever before. And, business angels are no longer just venture capitalists. They are friends and family members on Kickstarter.

In fact, Kickstarter is the perfect example of how engaging business has become. People all over the world are willing to pay to be a part of something. They are buying into the timeless story of a person and a plan. Today, there is a desire to connect with fresh business stories like never before.

rollodexIt is a mistake, however, to think that this passion only lives in the start-up world. Customers in both the business and consumer space, more than ever, are looking to connect with the core idea of business large and small. They are attracted to origins of their favourite companies, their missions and their people.

There is a humanly relevant essence to every business regardless of size or category. It is what people in this social media crazy world are looking to connect with—not a brand. Brands by themselves are hollow.

Marketers, advertisers, business decision makers and the like need to look back to the initial spark that started it all. They need to dial up the pure, core idea and make it shine. People will respond. They get it.

There is been a lot of talk about focusing on the “why” of a business. This is with good reason, that is where the power is. The pure idea behind it all is always more of a force than a brand name or line extension.

The emotional connection between a humanly relevant idea and the heart of the business drives everything — now more than ever. So brush aside those old thoughts of Rolodexes and liquid lunches. And, make certain to shelve the idea that the brand should serve as the driver. It is the business itself that has become something far more inspiring, creative and, yes, human.

Danny Turnbull is managing director at Gyro in Manchester.

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