“What other brand-name do you see tattooed on people?”
– Bob Dron, Harley Davidson Dealer

The most popular tattoo in the U.S. is an image of the Harley Davidson logo. Rugged individuality and personal freedom – an experience that is ageless and timeless, being part of a group of atypical, outdoorsy dudes is what the brand, the logos, and the products represent. Harley’s clients represent freedom from mainstream products and social norms, yet they are living a lifestyle that support’s one of America’s most widely-sold products.

It seems strange to say that the easy-going, carefree and down-to-earth Harley owners are part of an elite group of people, but they are, and being so invested in a brand… going so far as to get the brand tattooed on their bodies proves that while these clients think that are above the status-quo, they have actually submitted to one of the best marketing strategies out there – creating and maintaining a brand personality.

The same can be said for the brand that has essentially taken over the universe: Facebook. Facebook’s creator Mark Zuckerberg refused to begin making money off of the brand until it became a high-status, cool, elitist movement. He began seeking out high-profile, well-educated, Ivy League students and then started working downwards from there — branching out to people who were not, but would like to be part of an elitist group. It had to be cool before he could “sell” the brand to potential advertisers and investors.

While their products are extremely different, the sales process is exceptionally similar. Both Harley and Facebook have not only sold a product, but have given their customers access into an exclusive group. Harley has conventions and town-hall meetings all over the world. Their annual Spring Bike Week in Daytona Beach, FL attracts 100,000 people – some of them don’t even own a Harley but are essentially walking advertisements for the brand.

I guess I would say that the marketing goal described in this blog is to not only sell a product but also to influence a lifestyle. It was cool to go to Woodstock and Studio 56. It’s cool to have an Iphone 4 and a Macbook Pro, it is cool to wear a shirt stating, “J’adore Dior” and shoes with a red sole (Christian Louboutin). The thing about all of these products is that they have brand personality… they all mean something, say something about their clients and lead people to believe that their customers represent a specific lifestyle and social status. Find out what your brand personality is and relate it to your target audience. Don’t just create a product; create the lifestyle associated with it.

Make sure your company is well branded. If you have any questions about it, contact the experts at Insivia – we will make sure you are pointed in the right direction.