The “Unbrandables” are a new kind of consumer: savvy, sensitive to inauthenticity; hostile to relentless, debt-driving materialism; and suspicious of marketing for products they do not want or that are bad for the environment.
Yet this is not to say that this demographic always rejects branding. From Muji in Japan, Mojang in Sweden, and Deus ex Machina in Australia to The Village Voice in New York, and even the California-based fast-food brand In-N-Out Burger, brands both new and established have been able to win over a more skeptical set of consumers by recognizing that honesty is the best policy on practical as well as moral grounds.
Unbrandable is the guide, as much as there can be one, to imitating these companies’ successful marketing strategies. Author Adam Stone examines fifty brands and individuals who have learned how to thrive in this new branding landscape by taking a more creative, transparent approach. Each profile focuses on either a brand that works, an industry professional who has adapted to new branding challenges, an individual who can articulate better than any old-fashioned focus group what the new consumer wants, or a place—among them, Berlin and Sao Paulo—that flourishes on unbrandable principles.
[Outlining] the world of ‘unbrandables,’ both unbrandable people, a new consumer group that rejects inauthenticity and materialism, and unbrandable brands, those products that have found a way to connect with these consumers …this work offers a provocative discussion on how consumers and brands interact and will satisfy those interested in marketing, advertising, or consumer behavior.
— Library Journal
Adam N. Stone has identified a subculture that refuses to crow up, settle or sell out. But will they buy in? To answer that question, Stone defines the space where brands must operate if they are to reach the unbrandables.
— Communication Arts
Adam N. Stone
Adam N. Stone, aka King Adz, is a filmmaker, author, and creative director of 100proofTRUTH, an online magazine that celebrates urban culture. His previous books include The Stuff You Can’t Bottle.