What do stand out brands do?

Have you ever noticed how a crowd exits from a packed venue? Even if there are three exit doors people mostly take the center one. You see this pattern play out in marketing too.

Every brand aspires to be unique, to stand out from the others and offer something uniquely meaningful—yet when it comes to executing on those aspirations we marketers tend to imitate, dumb down and deviate towards the mediocre mean. We head where everyone else is headed because the uncrowded corners feel risky. In fact, the opposite is true. You stand out when you stand for something— when you go to a place your peers or competitors aren’t prepared to go.