Desperation in Branding: The Peculiar Trend of “And Also”

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In the world of marketing and branding, the art of succinctly and effectively conveying a brand’s identity and mission is paramount. Brands strive to create a strong, memorable, and unique image, but sometimes they find themselves struggling to articulate exactly who they are and what they do. This is where the peculiar trend of “and also” statements comes into play. Brands, out of sheer desperation, often resort to using “and also” to elaborate on their offerings and identity. But why is this trend on the rise, and what does it reveal about the challenges faced by modern brands?

The “and also” phenomenon has gained prominence in recent years as companies grapple with the complexities of the modern consumer landscape. In the past, many brands could succinctly define themselves through a single core product or service. Think of Apple and its iconic tagline, “Think different,” or Nike’s simple “Just Do It.” These slogans successfully encapsulated the essence of their brands. However, as businesses diversify their offerings and face increasing competition, the need for more comprehensive self-descriptions has emerged.

The “and also” trend is perhaps most evident in the tech industry. Companies in this sector often face the challenge of having multifaceted products and services that don’t neatly fit into a single, easily digestible phrase. Take Amazon for example. Amazon, originally an online bookstore, has evolved into an e-commerce behemoth with diverse services like Amazon Web Services, Amazon Prime, and the acquisition of Whole Foods. Their mission statement now reads, “We seek to be Earth’s most customer-centric company” … and also, we offer cloud computing services and original content production. This “and also” addition attempts to encompass the company’s multifaceted nature while acknowledging the inherent challenge of explaining such a complex business succinctly.

Beyond tech giants, the trend has also permeated other industries. Consider Starbucks, a company that initially prided itself on being a purveyor of high-quality coffee. But as Starbucks ventured into food, merchandise, and even entertainment partnerships, its identity became more complex. Their mission statement now reads, “To inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time.” … and also, to offer a wide array of food options and merchandise.”

So, what does this desperation to use “and also” reveal about brands and their predicament? It underscores the struggles brands face in a fast-paced, ever-changing marketplace. In an attempt to stay competitive and relevant, many brands are forced to diversify and expand their offerings. But as they do so, they find themselves in a precarious position of trying to define their multifaceted identities in a single sentence.

While the “and also” statements may reflect brand desperation, they also reflect an important truth about modern consumers. People have come to expect more from the brands they engage with. They seek versatility and variety. They want a one-stop shop for their needs and desires. This leaves brands with the daunting task of being all-encompassing while staying true to their core values and identity.

The emergence of “and also” statements in branding is a testament to the ever-evolving nature of business in the 21st century. Brands are being pushed to expand their horizons and offer more to consumers, yet they struggle to succinctly convey these multifaceted identities. It’s a delicate balancing act that can leave even the most prominent brands grasping for the right words. As consumers continue to demand more, the “and also” trend is likely to persist, and brands will need to master the art of conveying their complexity while retaining their authenticity.

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