What is the strategy behind being a Disruptor Brand in 2021?
I am going to give you the TOP 3 Ways Disruptors Brands Are Dominating the Marketplace in 2021, and we are going to look closely at three brands who are just killing it.
The first way Disruptor Brands are dominating the 2021 marketplace is by: Placing Their Faith in the Consumer
In 2005, the startup company that would one day be known as Klarna, entered a “Shark-Tank” style competition at the Stockholm School of Economics. Their pitch for launching a “Buy now, pay later” program for online shopping was not popular with the judges and they finished dead last. Five years later, in 2010, the Klarna yearly revenue increased by 80% to $54 million.
Imagine if they had taken the advice from the panel of investors who rejected the Klarna pitch and just given up? What most people don’t realize, is that Klarna is a bank. The typical brand we see for most financial institutions are very serious. Their brand messaging speaks to fiscal responsibility, planning for the future, protecting your assets…and there’s really not a lot of room for any fun. It’s serious business! And the approach to branding that the vast majority of financial institutions worldwide have taken is one of firm logic, establishing with their customers stoic professional relationships. And then Klarna comes along…
With its playful pink color scheme, quirky ads that range from delightfully strange to just plain hilarious, some featuring Snoop Dogg or SNL’s Maya Rudolph, and their tagline “Smoooth,” spelled with 3 o’s to emphasize how easy it is to make online purchases through Klarna, this Unicorn disruptor brand, now worth over $2B is forcing other banks to reconsider the way they interact with the world.
Today, hundreds a top brands worldwide are choosing Klarna to help make their customer’s purchasing experiences as Smoooth as possible. And it’s exponential growth can be attributed to their true win win win way of doing business. Customers can now purchase and own things that would have otherwise caused them financial strain because Klarna places its faith in the customers, allowing for balances to be paid off in 4 to 6 more manageable payments over an extended period of time. There is no interest, and there are no fees to the customers. Klarna is famously customer-centric, and their fees are paid by the retailers, who are quite honestly thrilled — because now their brands have way more reach so their sales go through the roof as more and more people are able to reasonably afford to support their brand…So we win, the brands we love win, and obviously Klarna is a winner for quite possibly the world’s most staunch and stuffy of all branches of branding — financial institutions!
Banks, investment firms, loan companies…with their emotionally detached business models in shades of black, and blue, and grey — for CENTURIES have stuck to the messaging of “it’s not business, it’s personal,” keeping their customers at arm’s length. And Klarna has single-handedly smashed that glass ceiling.
Now thanks to Klarna, things like designer couture, a status timepiece, or a stunning piece of art are no longer like divisions that separate the haves, and the have-nots. They are just nice things that are to be enjoyed by the people who want to own them. And the relationships that Klarna is creating by placing their faith in the customer, and providing more people with more of what they love, is a close emotional bond that makes people feel happy, proud, excited, and more capable of living into a greater future.
The second way disruptor brands are dominating the marketplace in 2021 is by: Enhancing Our Options
Obviously Klarna has achieved this as well, by making our money stretch further and widening the brand marketplace for literally millions of people…but once the pandemic hit and the lockdowns went into effect, one disruptor brand was positioned perfectly to really Come Out of Nowhere. I’m talking about DoorDash, which was originally created out of frustration from the lack of options we used to have with food delivery. Remember when it was basically just pizza, and maybe a good Chinese restaurant or two? Now we can enjoy having almost all of our favorite local restaurants delivered right to our door. The meal options for home delivery have EXPLODED. Everything from a Slurpee from 7–11 to a five course Michelin-rated meal can be at your doorstep within the next hour, thanks to DoorDash. Now that the world is slowly beginning to open back up, people are responding joyfully to brands that create more options for them to enjoy their time, enjoy their families, and enjoy their lives.
And finally the third way disruptor brands are dominating the marketplace in 2021 and beyond is by: Reinventing the Future.
As entrepreneurs, I’m sure you realize that the upheaval of 2020 created a whole new wave of perspectives, mindsets, and problems that can all be turned into millions of dollars worth of opportunities for those of us adept enough to recognize these emerging needs and create the solutions that will make people’s lives better. Just look at the workforce alone! Of all the millions of people who were at first feeling displaced from their work lives, having to adapt so they could work from home — studies have found that almost a third of those people now say, they don’t want to go back to the old way of working EVER again. In fact, many would rather quit and find a company that will allow them to work at least partially from home rather than return to their regular 9-to-5. This shift in the corporate mindset is HUGE! And we are only at the precipice of discovering how this new perspective is going to shape the way we function as a society. So when it comes to seizing this opportunity with both hands and harnessing the disruptor brand power of Reinventing the Future, we are going to look to Classroom Without Walls for our inspiration.
College-professor-turned-digital-influencer Dr. Ai Addyson is disrupting the way we learn and grow in the most amazing ways!
She says after 10 years of teaching in college classrooms she realized that, “the traditional education space is not preparing our students for the future, especially for students who are interested in becoming entrepreneurs and disruptive leaders…Learning from academics is not enough.”
Recognizing that a lot of what defines a successful entrepreneur from someone who has a great idea, but can’t seem to get their bearings, has nothing to do with what is being taught in traditional educational settings. It has WAY more to do with what they have learned outside of the classroom. Beyond the walls of academia. How to have presentation skills, how to be a good public speaker, how to treat people with dignity, the value of diversity…these are things that are either learned outside the classroom or not at all.
Classroom Without Walls gives their students of all ages, known as ‘disruptive learners,” the opportunity to create a new synergy, to have a unique perspective, to have mentors from all corners of the world, and gain skills that actually lead to becoming successful leaders not just in their industry, but in the world. She took something that already exists, Education — And reinvented it for the future.
One of my key guiding principles in branding is to be familiar but different, because the familiar is what draws people in and makes them feel at home, and the different is what piques the interest and sparks the enthusiasm.
Disruptor brands are game-changers, okay? Bottom line. And in 2021 the game has changed. The world has changed. It will be the entrepreneurs who are adept at spotting the gaps, and creating better ways to deliver what the customers of this changing world really need, who Come Out of Nowhere.
So now you have the secret sauce, The TOP 3 Ways Disruptors Brands Are Dominating the Marketplace in 2021. Let’s recap. They are:
Placing Their Faith in the Consumer, Enhancing Our Options, and Reinventing The Future
And as always the way to becoming an Inspiration to Millions starts with our motto: Love What You Do and Love How You Do It.