Jet Marketing


We have an old horse in our back pasture, his name is Ranger. I was recently noticing his tracks, his “path of least resistance” trails, that he has carved out in the pasture. It’s the path he always takes going from point A to point B.

Like Ranger, marketers believe in brand and graphic standards, consistency, in some ways doing things in a very methodical way. It is best practice, but it also might beg the question: when is it okay to color outside of the lines?

I think it always circles back to purpose and intention.

Ranger doesn’t care if he takes the same path every time. He isn’t trying to get noticed, he is just trying to be efficient.

I think it’s okay to deviate from the status quo for situations like:

  • A new product launch – get current customers to take notice in a new way
  • New competition in the marketplace – find a new way to highlight your strengths and differentiators
  • An internal campaign or initiative – motivate the team in a new way

Nike created a red basketball shoe during a time with the NBA required a mostly white shoe. They were a little desperate and needed to stand out, so they took a chance. (Yes, the movie Air is worth a watch). Can they take a big risk every day? Probably not. We all have brand standards and a brand promise to fulfill, and if we aren’t somewhat consistent, consumers fail to catch on.

Remember that if you create a campaign that is a little out of the ordinary, you should always tie back to your foundational brand. The mostly red, market disruptor, Air Jordan, still had the Nike logo on it. To make the desired impact, your deviations from tradition should be limited and professional.

As a marketing agency, our job is to be “keepers of the brand”, at least when it comes to voice and overall look and feel. But I can’t tell a lie — when a client challenges us to push beyond the normal track, it’s a fun challenge for our team.

Jackie O’Hara, Boss Lady

Jackie loves getting to know a company personally during the process of crafting or updating its brand. Always looking for unique ideas, she finds the most simple and honest ideas are often the most effective.