Can you believe he wrote that? Don’t make a brand consistent? Huh?
Ok, here’s why I wrote that: Consistency is not enough.
In fact, consistency is often boring.
Don’t think consistent. Think complementary.
Take one of the world’s strongest brands – Apple. I don’t expect the different components of the Apple brand I come in contact with (computer, iPod, iPhone, apple.com, iTunes, iTunes store, Genius Bar, retail shopping experience, computer repair, etc.) to all say the same thing, with consistency. That would be weird. No, I expect them to be in complement, creating experiences that blend in harmony.
The oft-mentioned “McDonald’s is a great brand because I can get the same hamburger anywhere is the world” is not really what makes a great brand. It may make a predictable product, but it doesn’t make for an interesting brand. Experiences worth noticing and thinking about use contrast and tension to create interest. One of my favorite avocations is playing jazz. Beautiful jazz harmonies are filled with tension and dissonance; the contrast is what makes them beautiful. The same thing can happen with experiences your customers have with you.
Consistency is not enough. You can aim higher. Think “complement.”