Power of Brands - Presented by Q-dance
14:45 - 15:30
DeLaMar Theater (D5 Panel Room) | Marnixstraat 402, Amsterdam
Young people today are maybe more alert than ever to racial or social discrimination and injustice: they are, in short, “woke”.
If brands want to stay relevant, they need to adapt this to this mentality. This new “genZ” (aged 16-24) – currently shaping the direction of society – is brand-savvy, and looking specifically for brands that help them raise their collective voice. This is the era of activism 2.0: vote with your money. The smarter companies have noticed and are tapping into this development.
Purpose-driven brands are born out of idealism: they observe an environmental or social issue and create a product or service that contributes to solving it. Attracting the conscious audience in the first instance, but not leaving the broad audience behind.
Tony Chocolonely first drew attention from both the conscious cool kids, because of their sense of purpose, and the wider audience because of the actual quality of the product and packaging. They are driven to help a large consumer sector change their consumer habits for the better, without them fully realising they are part of change. The same goes for Patagonia. This brand has been around for years, attracting a very conscious and committed crowd. Its product has now become fashionable with the masses – but not everyone wearing the iconic t-shirt today is aware of the movement behind it.
Obviously most brands are not born out of idealism, so if they want to be seen as representing something more than a pure product, they need to go through a transformation. They need to clean up their own act and find a way to use the influence they have for the better. Nike, for example, has demonstrated how you can make a political statement by providing space to the oppressed, by starring the (in the US considered to be controversial) Colin Kaepernick in its new campaign: by some accounts gaining $6bn of value in the process.
Dieuwertje van Damen, founder of Rainbow Collective agency will kick-off with a keynote and dive into the world of brands who use their power of speech. After this we explore what this means for the event industry; how can you make the shift towards bringing people together to contribute towards positive change while having a good time? Do you have to make people aware of your politics, or do you transform your following into conscious consumers without them realising it by changing your policies – or both? With Q-Dance and Wonderfruit we discuss the challenges and opportunities that come with transforming from a brand that is build to entertain into a one that contributes towards positive change.
Dieuwertje van Damen (Rainbow Collection, NL)
Jason Swamy (Wonderfruit,TH)
Sander Bijlstra (Q-Dance, NL)
Nadine Ridder (NL)
Freelance Creative Strategist