The diabolical dilemma is that l am a marketer who does not believe in brands.Its a paradox l cannot seem to reconcile hence my consternation at writing this particular subject for the winter challenge and in the process derailing my ambition to keep up to date with this winter goal. l like true authentic scenarios and my gut feeling seems to suggest that brands are overrated. I call it flossing for the cameras.
My experience is that when we become brand loyal we become entwined in deception – a pretentious climb into a fake utopia that only makes our fall all that much more spectacular when we discover that the brands we craved for have turned out to be an illusion -How our view point of our favourite stars has dwindled because they could not eulogize with us the mattering of lives black. We became disillusioned because we fell in love with the brand and not the generic humans and cannot accept the default picture we see.We made them superstars when there were just like us -humans.
I chose therefore to become master of the generic. l want applications and remedies that work- the rest of the package is meant to scoop the top dollar. Branding is about imagery , persuading the mind to having an alternative view – creating a new perception of a non existent world . I should know about changing perspective- afterall l am an artist. My baobab trees are simple pen strokes in different shapes creating the illusion of a tree until the tree starts looking like a tree. Fake it until you make it- religious leader once said.You hype up the product and service so well it starts looking good in the name of branding.
The generic though stands tall and proud. There is no better understanding of the generic more than the medicines churned out by big pharma. The typical medicines we peddle and foist down our throats are mostly creations of our own generic African medicines that were hoisted off from our own bushes and given away for a few cents by some bureaucrat-only to have them come back to us in diluted perfumed form. So my trip to the pharmacy , if l must ( after l have tried my own herbal remedies) is asking for the best of a product (the brand) and asking for an effective form that does the same job but costs less ( the generic)- that same formula l use in everything. Read the fine print at the back of a branded product and look for the most competitive alternative. The generic has no fanfare to it. No extras , it is what it is. l like to think of myself that way too . Very generic-l stay true to myself. I only ever keep my short African hair or my locks. Those two options since my early teen years -my mother will say it was eczema that made me have that choice only, others swayed by the illusion of westernization will say a little demon is lurking there-come on!
You see , the problem l have with brands is that what you see is not what you get rather what you see is what you want to see. I always say that as long you have not met a marketing person in person you are okey-meet them one on one my friend- you will be sold hook-line and sinker, because you will be sold illusions of grandeur and splendour that will make you spend more than you ought to -ask those saddled with credit card debt chasing illusive brands made to work like drugs.The moment you drink from that cup you will no longer be able to drink from any other cup. The road will become saddled with keeping up appearances and waiting for the next better version. Brands will the peril of most.
I will occasionally use a few brands but my life certainly will not revolve around brands. Brands become too big and become a law unto themselves and then forget why they started in the first place. They become a facade -an idea and no longer a product . Its not that you are lied to, no-far from it. The selective part of the mind will only hear and see what it wants to. So the brand l care to peddle and represent is- good old me.The best brand in the world that l care to work for is the one that comes out when we press the default button-which is all of us in our generic form with all of our flaws and humanity. l love to see the authentic unbridled form that is not genetically modified. Brands are genetic modifications of a false reality and so unfortunately l remain unsold on the life of brands-maybe a victim of my trade but also a brutal assessment of the same.l will remain master of the generic and peddler of no brand.