Yippee ki-yay brand identity.

This week I finally got around to watching the latest installments from the Die Hard and Pirates of the Caribbean franchises. In a way I felt obligated, just as I stuck with The Office sans Steve Carrell. The first Pirates of the Caribbean gave us all the infamous Jack Sparrow and the first Die Hard film is probably my favorite Christmas movie ever. But by the fourth or fifth installment of the same thing it gets old… and so do the characters. The first installments were innovative; the subsequent are simply consistent.

I decided to look into some data on the films (Die Hard; Pirates of the Caribbean). It came as no surprise to me that the first installments for both franchises carried higher film ratings than the most recent installments. The comparisons are almost polarizing. With that single piece of data the next assumption would be that the profit margin suffered as well, but it didn’t. The most recent installments from both franchises (Die Hard; Pirates of the Caribbean) made exceedingly more in gross profit than the first installments. The consumer and critical reviews for these films were terrible, but the bottom-line wasn’t adversely affected at all.

That got me thinking about consistency and innovation. I found myself asking a lot of rhetorical questions.

  • Which character trait is more important to brand identity: consistency or innovation?
  • Is gross profit more important than consumer reviews? Is it the other way around?
  • What does it look like to be both consistent and innovative as company?
  • Are there brands besides Apple that have successfully married innovation with consistency and how do they do it?

Which metric is most important to your company? Start a conversation. Pick a question and post your response in the comment box below.

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