The band became an icon through its extensive and diverse music catalog, but the deeper lessons lie in how it keeps creativity at the center of the brand’s promise. The brand records, markets, distributes and performs creatively.
I recently learned that two of my favorite authors and branding minds, Mitch Joel and Mark Schaefer, are also huge Radiohead fans. This discovery inspired me to write a Radiohead guide to branding excellence:
1. Push the envelope.
With their seventh studio album, “In Rainbows,” Radiohead self-distributed a digital version through its website and allowed people to pay what they thought the album was worth.
No one had ever done this before. In true Radiohead fashion, the band pushed the envelope.
Radiohead embraced the dwindling popularity of the physical music medium and didn’t allow developments in digital music delivery to pass it by. There are questions about the financial and distributive success of the experiment, but it was ambitious nonetheless.
Take your brand to the limit in the areas of customer service, product design and delivery. Standing out trumps blending in.
2. Create a window through video.