A billion dollar lesson in differentiation

Do you ever look at your competitor’s sites, and your own, and think everyone looks and sounds kind of the same? Hopefully the answer is NO but just in case let’s get inspired and explore how differentiation is possible even in the blandest and most saturated market.

Branding Before Breakfast Ep 181 A billion dollar lesson in differentiation

Morning. I’m Jodie, I’m the MD at Tiny Hunter. And today I want you to think about are you differentiated? If we grabbed 3 or 4 of your main competitors and we did some swapping of logos and content across websites, would anyone even notice the difference or does everyone look and sound the same? A little bit of inspiration today in a category that is so saturated. Water. Get it? What a terrible unintended joke. Anyway, saturated market, could it be a more boring, more bland, more undifferentiated product?

In 2017, a water brand launched and they have done everything differently in this category, and their name is Liquid Death. First of all, they’re called Liquid Death. Now, can you literally think of any worse, stupider name for a water brand? And that’s the thing. When they’re making decisions for their business, they always think, what is the dumbest idea? Which means that they’re very much always doing the opposite of what the rest of the category is doing, which is appealing because they’re really standing out, which is not enough on its own. But the thing is, Liquid Death was built on a really interesting insight. The insight that they had was that musicians were embarrassed to be drinking water because you’re supposed to be at gigs and you’re supposed to be drinking alcohol. And they were pouring their water into energy drinks. So Liquid Death decided to create a water brand that would work for this market, that would be cool. And they did everything the opposite, like I said So it’s called Liquid Death, the tagline is ‘Murder Your Thirst,’ it’s in a big can, it looks very rock and roll. So they have managed to create a really distinctive positioning and really connect with a specific type of person. And this is really extended to people that are going out with their friends drinking, but they don’t want to drink. They don’t want to sit there with a plastic water bottle. They’re getting the Liquid Death cans. This start up is now being valued over a billion dollars. And I think it’s just really an interesting inspiration considering the challenges that they face But how they approached it, how they built it on an insight and how they are a huge success story. A little inspiration for you today.

That’s it from me, it’s time for brekkie.

Jodie de Vries

Written by: Jodie de Vries
Published: March 27, 2024

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