A penny for your thought? Or will it cost me an arm and a leg? Whatever it is, I’m a person who is ever ready to discuss words at the drop of a hat!
OK, I’ll stop beating around the bush and tell you now that this week’s bullet is all about idioms.
Idioms are phrases established by usage as having a deeper meaning not deducible from those of the individual words. For example, when one says the ball is in your court, they don’t mean that there’s a spherical object sitting on your floor, but that it is your turn to make the next move.
So you may ask, what’s a branding blog doing talking about idioms? Well, we believe that idioms work like brands. How you may ask? We’ve broken it down in to 3 points that we can learn and apply into our brands:
Idioms distill lengthy ideas into a single, succinct and condensed phrase. They take an extended and abstract concept, like accomplishing two feats with a single action, and simplify them by saying that you killed two birds with one stone. Similarly, your brand should take ideas and emotions and epitomize them into a single logo or tagline; like how the idea of a go-getting champion is embodied in a single swoosh.
Idioms take a while to realize their meaning. As they say, Rome wasn’t built in a day. Only through constant usage does an idiom’s true meaning become established. For us, this means the brand conversation has to be continually expressed for the concept to take root. Apple’s idea of “Think Different” wouldn’t have lasted if they didn’t regularly come out with products that walked the talk.
Idioms are impactful. They take regular concepts and amplify them by giving it an elevated sensory cue. It’s not enough to say that it’s raining heavy; nay, it’s raining cats and dogs. In branding terms, this means coming up with concepts that will blow your mind. Take DeBeers’ 1948 campaign highlighting the (perceived) value of diamonds: “A Diamond Is Forever.” Surely enough, the diamond has become a symbol of everlasting love thanks to some really powerful branding
Idioms are everywhere and we use them everyday. But never did we realize values of an idiom beyond its intrinsic meaning. So the next time you work on your brand, always remember to be on the ball because it isn’t always a piece of cake, and if you don’t learn the fundamentals, you are surely going to miss the boat.
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