- Use the Force Luke
Briefly distracted, Luke looks away from the targeting computer, then returns to the sights
Cut to Darth Vader in his TIE Fighter cockpit
-The Force is strong with this one
Cut back to Luke concentrating on the weapon's targeting computer
-Luke, trust me
Hesitating briefly, Luke then confidently turns off the targeting computer which retracts back into its housing
Cut to the rebel command headquarters where Princess Leia, C-3PO , and others, are anxiously viewing the events over an illuminated battle map.
-His computer's off. Luke, you switched off your targeting computer, whats wrong?
-Nothing I'm alright
Video Link: (0:00/4:01) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DOFgFAcGHQc
George Lucas was crafting drama and possibly communicating a metaphor for trusting one's own instincts, probably both. Luke Skywalker rejected the resources that were at his disposal - targeting computer, personnel support, technology and the rebel alliance's expertise (all of which I will call the system) and trusted his instincts to solve the problem.The rebel alliance was saved, but the beloved R2-D2 took one for the cause.
The message for anyone developing a new brand, gym or otherwise, is this....don't look to the system for ideas or answers, find a solution that is inspired by you.When developing your brand identity skim past articles in your trade journals that celebrate a competitor's brand aesthetic. Click past HGTV and put down lifestyle magazines. Don't visit your competitors facilities or like businesses. Don't give your creative consultants absolute control over your brand aesthetic and don't heed the good advice of friend's family and colleagues, reject the system, find your own Force.
Typically, when developers are creating their branding platforms, they study, review and look at their competitors brands, it's a natural instinct. However, by doing so, they've planted a seed for a tainted brand aesthetic of their own. They loose the opportunity to create a unique brand identity and business model because their mind map has been influenced, swayed and shaped by the colors, designs, concepts and aesthetics they had seen when studying their competitions brand.
It's understood. A great investment is going to be made in developing your brand and you're in hyper-sensitive-mode. You want to make safe, sure and accurate decisions that will insure your success. As metaphor, Luke's weapons targeting computer did the same, insured a safe, sure and accurate shot that would insure success, yet he turned it off.
Here it is.... You know a luxury gym model when you see it. You know a big-box chain model when you see it. You know a muscle gym when you see it. You know a CrossFit Box when you see it. You see it, you get it? This is what happens when you follow the system instead of trusting yourself to create your own brand.
The problem is systemic in the fitness industry, and I believe true for most forms of commerce. For any market segment be it luxury gyms, big-box, muscle gyms, personal training studios and CrossFit boxes, developers look at, study and visit the existing models that are in the market. After doing so, they deliver some slightly different, yet obviously identical, version of the aesthetic, aka better sameness, leading to blurred brands. I have validated this preposition in earlier posts by identifying the six trends that currently hold the industry is a death spiral of better sameness.
When trusting the system, looking at your competition, following the herd, and creating a brand that is slightly different, but also slightly the same, you have undermined a great marketing opportunity to deliver something entirely different to your target demographic.
We advise our client's to reject wholesale the aesthetics and brands of their competition and of their market segment. These developers are creating novel new gym models that are dominating their markets, and it's all their ideas. Some inspired by the Rocky and Terminator film sagas, another that reflects the owner's Grecian heritage. Personal training studios with aesthetics used in baseball, and Subway Chic and Nature and gym models that simply reflect and reinforce the client's own logo. The point is, these gym developers created their own brands rather than being influenced by the competition or the market.
These new developers "Use The Force"