Just call us curiosity nerds. That’s fine. But this week, I was thinking about hot candy.
I got to wondering about the insides of Hot Tamales. So instead of just chomping down on a Hot Tamale like I normally do, I let it dissolve in my mouth.
What I learned was that nice, red-hot cinnamon flavor didn’t last long. The inside of the candy becomes a colorless, flavorless lump. (I admit I learned it was colorless because I had to spit it out.)
All the snappy flavor was on the outside. It didn’t last.
Compare this to an Atomic Fireball. The longer you have that candy in your mouth, the hotter it gets. The strongest, fired-up flavor is on the inside...and the smaller that piece of candy gets, the hotter it gets. Screaming hot! It will make my eyes water, but it’s darned addictive. I always finish that whole piece of candy.
I think these are great schemas for how you should think about your brand. The brands that have a powerful, strong inside are addictive. Their messaging is consistent. Their internal audiences understand and advocate for them so their external fans sense that they're authentic through and through—not just sugar-coated. Like Atomic Fireballs, your brand isn’t for everyone—but that’s OK. You can’t be all things to all people. If you try to do that, you're nothing but a bland brand.
Maybe your brand is like M&M’s—also delicious in the middle—or maybe you’re well-rounded like an Oreo. There are lots of ways to be excellent inside and out. And each has its own set of raving fans.
Whatever you do, don’t be the brand that’s flavorless and colorless on the inside. You’ll disappoint, and you might just be spit out.