By Peter Cronin | Thursday, August 10, 2017 | 1 Comment
We hit the open road this year for our vacation trip to Rhode Island – two long days of driving to our favorite beach. As hard as I tried to leave work behind me, taking the freeway north turned out to be a non-stop branding barrage.
The usual fuel-and-fast-food-ahead signs, cluttered with the familiar logos, were one thing. But the real branding geniuses of the road are the trucking companies. Somewhere along the way, someone figured out that those semi-trailers are good for more than just hauling stuff from here to there. They also serve as billboards, their messages repeated ad infinitum as we made our way north. But – and here’s the catch – you don’t just pass them by like those old school, static billboards. No, these billboards roll right along with you!
For the long-distance traveler, there’s a choice to be made. Let it drive you nuts or just join in. We found ourselves critically analyzing and ranking trucking company logos to pass the time. And phrases like “Our Driving Force Is People” (Averitt Express) and “Helping The World Keep Promises” (Old Dominion Freight Line), are now indelibly etched in my tag line-loving brain. All that driving got me thinking. There’s a lesson here for any business trying to drive their message home on a crowded freeway of brand messages.
Cruising along, I would come upon those logos and taglines again and again, randomly but consistently. I never knew when they would appear, but suddenly there they were again. That’s a pretty good template for how best to approach, for example, your social media efforts. The first step is to get out on that highway. But once you’re there, you’ve got to keep driving, keep interacting, and keep yourself engaged with those you encounter along the way.
And finally, the most important lesson of all. When you reach your destination, go to the beach, stop thinking about all that stuff, and just relax!