The Subtle Art of Brands Not Giving a F*ck


Like many new year’s resolutionaries, in January I was looking for something to help kickstart 2019. After dabbling in KonMarie, I also picked up a copy of Mark Manson’s book – The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck.

Whilst the book does take a swing at the advertising and media worlds for encouraging the wrong metrics for people to measure their successes by (ie cars will make you happier, this new fragrance will make you sexier), there was also a key takeout that brands could apply to themselves – that you need to stop giving a fuck about a lot of things, and choose to only give a fuck about what really matters.

For brands, this means stop trying to be everything to everyone and focusing on a single message so you can effectively build and refresh stronger brand memories. Rather than saying all the benefits of your product, pick the one that can be distinctive. Rather than re-inventing the wheel with a new campaign every three months, try refreshing the brand messaging you’ve already invested in.

In the age of information overload and shorter attention spans, attempting to create memories that place a cognitive load on the viewer by saying too much can be counterintuitive. Consumers have become very good at switching off - pretty much choosing that complex messages are things that they’re not going to give a fuck about.

Alex Davidson