Design is the Secret Ingredient in Successful Green brands of the Future
My attention was hijacked recently by marketing images of this new concept car from VW. Concept cars pop-up at every motor show, and alone the sleek lines of the next big auto-thing is not usually enough to tickle my fancy, but this one hit my sweet spot. The new ‘e-bugster’ from VW is not just the beautifully designed evolution of the famous ‘VW beetle’ – but it’s also ‘green’.
Breaking through the Green Ceiling with outstanding Brand Design
The e-bugster combines both genuine green credentials (it’s an all-electric coupe) with may favorite of all brand attributes – outstanding design. For me, this mindset is most often the missing ingredient for the customer value proposition of environmentally-centric brands. Being ‘green’ just isn’t enough to move any but the most environmentally conscious of consumers.
As a branding consultant I’ve been privy to many product and business briefings with an environmental brand proposition. For most the products main attribute is its green credential – it rarely compares with its competition on design, functionality or more importantly cost. As the dust clears from the initial cloud of interest around green brands, consumers are demonstrating that even though they may be ideologically predisposed to environmentally friendly products and services, unless they are of equal or better quality and design, and unless they are of equal or better value price-wise, in most cases they will fail to motivate customers to purchase. Good intent unfortunately rarely translates into good business. I call this the ‘Green Ceiling’.
Which takes me back to this impressive piece of brand design from our friends at Volkswagen.
The ‘e-bugster’ concept car provides zero emissions and a range of 100 miles (160 km) with 114-horsepower, the vehicle uses an 85-kilowatt electric motor powered by lithium-ion battery pack, mounted under the rear bench in a layout similar to that of the original beetle. The battery is rechargeable via a plug located at the front below the logo, charging to 80% capacity in 30 minutes. For car lovers – the sporty look of the coupe is enhanced by its low, streamlined roof, widened C-pillars, contrasting black A-pillars, and 19-inch alloy wheels.
Call it Green Plus, it is those brands that pull the pants-down of their competition through design, functionality, performance and price who truly lead the charge for saving the planet. Like it or not we have evolved as a marketplace to expecting it all and more – we face the no compromise generation of consumers regardless of the colour of our brand proposition.
If you’d like some assistance is developing a sharp value proposition for your brand – green or any other colour – why not get in touch. We’d love to help you develop a successful go-to-market strategy and brand design solution.