Many physiologists will tell you that the mind of a child is at its most natural and untainted in the early stages of growth and development. It’s quite a marvel to watch a baby discover the various tastes, textures and sounds that are in their immediate environment. At this stage they know very little and are excited, or sometimes frightened, by what they discover. The potential they have is unmatched, except perhaps a brand that is not aware of it’s own potential.

In South Africa many brands either don’t know or understand the potential they yield. They could either create or change a perception in society and, in some cases, the world. This brand has people who are tasked with enabling the brand to try new things, explore and discover all of which are the roots to growth.

Now, unlike the mind of a child, these people have what is called INSIGHT, into brand history, strategic direction and the target audience. All of these are great; in some cases though, not so great.

As client service people, myself being one of them, we often encounter campaigns or simple briefs where we overthink the task. This is primarily because be have INSIGHT. We create campaigns or social media posts that we believe will resonate with our target audience and will then, hopefully, go viral.

Advertising people, with the media, are probably the main drivers of anything going viral, really. We tend to forget this when coming up with content or campaigns; that this is a talking point because it was simple and unique.

We use our INSIGHT to determine what we think will get the most traction in mainstream as well as social media. We do this because everyone in all our target audience is looking to jump onto whatever we say because we, “the brand”, are the law, right? Wrong.

The line that subdivides people is fast fading. People are unique and should be viewed as individuals, not a collective people. Our INSIGHT into our audience has to be correct: we had a strategic agency sample our audience so it has to be correct, right? Again, wrong, though not completely. Persons want to be spoken to, not at.

What if we just did it?  If we neglected the insight we have? What if we tried something new, if we explored? What if we tried, for our brands, to dare? Much like a child, we could discover the sweet taste of lemon or the odd smell of vanilla.

There will always be one of two outcomes, a win or a lose. At the end of the day, we shall have gained knowledge, understanding and best of all we will develop and grow.

Growth comes with its pains. But man, the rewards are often off the charts. Just remember to keep it simple, our audience is unique and that if we’re not growing we’re inevitably dying.

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