IKEA Says Yes. Clearly Swedish Brands Get It.
IKEA Puts the FUN in Function
When it comes to Branding, Sweden’s IKEA truly gets it. I feel no guilt over growing up believing that all businesses were evil. Money hungry, “Greed is good” repeating, cigar toting, spend more on one suit than most families make per month yet perpetually annoyed and angry white men walking around with whisky and contemplation of suicide became the amalgamated cacophony I was shown throughout all kinds of media.
Businessmen were the bad guys. Creatives were good guys. Artists just wanted everyone to be happy while businessmen were sleeping with their secretaries. It was this attitude about the business world that led me to agree that good business is only possible when greed and evil are in charge. Thanks to all the movies and shows, I really believed that.
Then I met IKEA,
a worldwide furniture company with beautifully designed and surprisingly affordable prices. It turns out greed and evil can bring some decent returns, but businesses (and businesspeople) are at their best and most stable when the overarching aim of the brand is the betterment of those lives who’ve entrusted their money and loyalty to one’s brand.
IKEA could very well have become a furniture company who catered to that select percentage of people in the world who redo the furniture in their homes every couple years by walking into the place with the most attention-getting reputation and order all new everything. They could’ve made even more money by exploiting their talents, but IKEA is a brand with integrity, and that’s ultimately what Branding comes down to: Will the involvement of this business and their services/products do me and my family good?
IKEA’s aim is Yes. How does your company answer that question? Branding matters because more and more people are asking this question with increasing severity. Gordon Gecko may have been right when he said “greed is good.” But that fact is, these days, good isn’t good enough. Brands needs to be great, and great brands are those that join IKEA in saying Yes.