In an age of me-too products and instant communications, keeping up with the competition is no longer a winning strategy. Today you have to out-position, out-maneuver, and out-design the competition. The new rule? When everybody zigs, zag. In his first book, THE BRAND GAP, Neumeier showed companies how to bridge the distance between business strategy and design. In ZAG, he illustrates the number-one strategy of high-performance brands—radical differentiation.
This is the best book on marketing in the business. I love this book and it is easy to read. It’s so easy to read that you could finish it off in a few hours. When people ask about design and communicating a message, I refer them to Zag. See the image below to see how the book is laid out.
Now, you are probably what does a book on branding have to do with youth ministry? That is a great question. I personally think that branding has a lot to do with youth ministry. We are constantly communicating to teenagers. Teenagers live in a world where they are bombarded by information. Marty Neumeier states how this information is making people/teens block out all information, he observes that the human mind deals with clutter the best way it can: by blocking it out. As a result, “the newest barriers to competition are the mental walls that customers erect to keep out clutter. For the first time in history, the most powerful barriers to competition are not controlled by companies, but by customers.” We are trying in the midst of all that information to communicate God’s truth to them. We want teenagers to be moved by God, accept him into their lives and become apart of our crazy community called the church. Any time you communicate a message it is apart of a brand. Your church right now is a brand whether you like that or not. Zag will give you some simple tools to communicate clearly.
This was one of my favourite books last year. I hope you pick it up. I loved how this book is about branding, and it is actually branded well.