Evian Water is a Scam. I Should Know. I Drink It.12th March 2018
I drink Evian. My mother drank Evian. My sister drinks Evian. I can virtually guarantee that any kids of mine will be sipping from a bottle of Evian should they need to quench a thirst in the (hopefully) not-too-near future.
Half a litre of Evian water costs 70p from the shop across from the office. There are cheaper alternatives, sure, but I’ll stick with my usual, thanks. And if – in some dystopian future – Sainsbury’s pump the price up by 10p then, well, I’m on the hook for an extra 10p when I buy my favourite bottle of water.
I Have a Confession
I have no idea what makes Evian water different to or better than any of its fellow shelf-dwellers. And if you popped that very same H2o into another vessel, I’m far from convinced that I’d be able to pick it out of a line-up. Bottled water is a scam.
So, even in the face of all this cold, clear evidence, why would I still recommend you drink Evian?
Branding has been around since the very first trademarks were registered in the 1870s. It has navigated its way through design and strategy, beyond culture and values; branding is now a living, breathing relationship between a business and those that can consume it, over any other.
Branding is designing for purpose, not vanity. In other words, branding isn’t the water bottle; it’s why you drink it. It can define who you are as a person to those looking on.
Jeff Bezos, CEO and Co-Founder of Amazon, puts it like this: “Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.”
Amen Jeff, Amen.
Great branding endures. Great branding can turn innocuous smoothies into Innocent Smoothies, or Apple into ‘OMG I love Apple so much!’. Bad branding is the difference between us remaining and leaving the EU.
How to Avoid Being Scammed
A few words on how to get people saying nice things about your company when you nip out for a bottle of water:
– Ask strangers what they think about your brand. They’ll tell you the truth
– This isn’t about ‘what you like.’ It’s definitely not about what the boss likes
– This is about finding the gap between your competitors, that your audience is looking for, and that your product can deliver
– Learn more about your competitors. Learn even more about your audience
– Nobody cares about features, really. Everyone cares about the benefits those features provide, really
– Trial a design in a small space. Then a large space. Make sure it works in both
– Spend time on strategy. Spend even more time on it when you realise you made 15 big mistakes putting it together
– Look at your brand. If it doesn’t piss someone off, you’re not doing it right. This is as much about who this is not for, as who it is for
– Branding can be expensive. Bad branding is way, way more expensive