Lifestyle Brands No More

.Existing vs. Living

On Shark Tank not long ago, I saw a couple of tea peddlers explain to the Sharks how they weren't just interested in selling caffeinated leaves—oh no—tea was merely the gateway drug of choice for eventually expanding into a..

[pregnant pause drum-roll for the retail buzz word de jour]

“lifestyle brand"

 

ATTENTION:

Your life has been commoditized.

Companies have found a way to sell identities.

 

Sorry.

 

 

Suggested Awkward Question to Ask Someone the Next Time You Pay a Compliment:

Where do you buy your identity?

 

Life has been *stylized* and we’re buying into it.

Why? Because these goods are so slick and appealing because they’re designed to make you want to be aligned with them – they help you to reinforce who you want to be

And  the real brilliance of a lifestyle brand is that the scope for selling you stuff is nearly infinite!

Soap, Shoes, Perfume, Books, Snacks, Knick Knacks, Look! There's a Place Nearly Everywhere in Your Life Where Your Identity Could Be Reinforced!

REAL LIFE CASE-STUDY-IN-POINT:

Tea Company’s Goods to Sell You *Before* Being Vetted By the Masses As a Lifestyle Brand:

Tea

Tea Company’s Goods to Sell You *After* Being Vetted By the Masses As a Lifestyle Brand:

Tea, $700 Bags, Silverware, Kitchen Tiles, ad infinitum..

 – so much STUFF that you can put in your house or where, or eat, or talk about, that will TELL THE WORLD WHO YOU ARE. Items that you can buy that tell a story about you. A story that you LIKE. You like being associated with.

WHY?

Full blown ascendance of a lifestyle brand, now seems to be the ultimate achievement.

Why?

 – the style of life, the manner in which it is conducted, has endless possibilities --

If you are a lifestyle brand, as long as there is life and ways of doing things to signal to others exactly what sort of person you are, then there will be things to sell you, and brands who want to be aligned with your desired “style” – with the way you want to project you live your life – and those brands can come up with a million items to sell you, an item for every corner, a story for every experience, prepackaged and delicious for whoever happens to want to communicate their values, their beliefs, and sometimes their actions.

Why do these brands care so much about representing you? About aggregating you all together?

So you can recognize a fellow tribe member when you see one? Is it really about unification & community support? 

Alas, I don’t think so.

I think it’s about

1)      Money

2)      Power

3)      Money

4)      Power

5)    The Need & Quest for the "LifeStyle Brand" Leaders' Significance in the World --

(uniting people through ideas, the Civil Rights Movements and the like is so 1960’s…. give me a Lifestyle Brand to join, to celebrate, to stand should to shoulder with its members … now that’s a cause you want to engineer and stand behind…)

Which brings me to…………….. why .Existing?

Because I believe in our empowerment of Artists, sans goods, sans the reduction of your life to micro-facets that can be tripped out, outfitted, decorated, turned into a demand in need of the right __________.