Primal Branding Series #4 – Rituals. Do you know yours?


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Continuing with my series on Primal Branding by Patrick Hanlon. I’ve discussed in previous posts the creation story, the creed, and the icon. This week, we move onto rituals.

“Rituals are the meaningful repeated points of contact between you and your guest, customer, client, or target market.”

These rituals come in many forms. For example, you putting a piece of lime into a Corona is a ritual. It was not based on history or culture or taste. It started as a bartender’s invention. Capitalized by marketers. Once the masses adopted this practice, a ritual was born.

Another example of ritual could be you expecting fare sales in your inbox every Tuesday. Therefore, you faithfully check your inbox or airline websites every Tuesday. That is a ritual.

In the blogsphere, a commonly adopted ritual is to post on a regular basis. If you post every Monday, your readers can build a ritual around reading your blog every Monday.

Alas, I have not adopted posting on a regular basis. I have found with my visitor stats that posting every other day have been most effectively. However, I have not necessarily take advantage of this insight. And really, there is no excuses considering I could write the posts ahead of time, and post-date the publishing.

(So readers, please comment if you think my irregular posting is affecting your blog reading ritual…)

On another front, let’s consider how else a business could apply ritual and build this code into everything you do.

Let’s look at the definition one more time: “meaningful repeated points of contact”.

That is something that happens already! Naturally! The trick is to identify them and to leverage them. Like anything, it is much easily to leverage what organically and naturally happen with your business than to build something new. Leveraging existing rituals is much easier than building new rituals. It would also make your brand more authentic.

For example, if you have a book store. Your products are part of an existing ritual. Your books are part of book club meetings. So, why not capitalize on that ritual and host the meetings? Perhaps suggest the next book to read for the club? Chances are the club would buy your suggestions at your store, rather than your competition.

On a personal branding front, what ritual are you already part of? What do people expect of you?

At work, I keep a candy jar in my cube. Many people think of me when 3pm comes around. That is a ritual, and, yes, there are many ways to leverage this. In addition to just building good will, it also offers me great opportunity to connect with different people in the office that I may not be working with right now. Sometimes, I could just bounce ideas off of them in those moments that they are in my cube.

But like any branding efforts, any mistake could derail the whole campaign. If you are always late to meetings, that would become your ritual and part of your brand!

So, what ritual are you already part of? Is there a way for you to leverage that to positively reinforce your brand?

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