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ROI Goes Primal...


Primal Branding that is. Last week, Patrick Hanlon, leading brand practitioner, founder of Thinktopia and author of Primal Branding and The Social Code, helped ROI discover its primal code.

So what do I mean by primal code?

What Is Primal Code?

Hanlon, an advertising veteran who has worked on global brands like Kraft, Levi’s, and Johnson & Johnson, created a code that attracts followers to your brand and transforms them into advocates.

"Your brand is not a logo, advertisement app or website," Hanlon explains. "Your brand is a community wired together by a belief system. Your brand is not the ‘why.’ It’s the ‘we.’”

Essentially, brands are communities. As a business, you should create a community of believers and brand zealots. Think of some of the most renowned brands — Starbucks, Google, Apple, Nike, Coca-Cola, even the USA and The Beatles — they have all created communities of passionate disciples and loyal fans.

patrick-hanlon-thinktopia.jpgHow did they do that? How did they become so powerful and successful?

Simple: they have a code. We all have a code, but we may not have unearthed it yet. Hanlon’s primal code helps brands become a beloved, essential part of our culture.

Hanlon’s primal code consists of seven key elements:

  1. Creation Story
  2. Creed
  3. Icons
  4. Rituals
  5. Sacred Words
  6. Nonbelievers
  7. Leader

According to Hanlon, every product and service must have these seven pieces of code to become a meaningful part of a culture. Determine these seven elements and you can create a community of believers and a sustainable belief system. All seven pieces of code must work together, but they must also stand on their own.

ROI’s Primal Code

As a team, we discerned ROI already had several pieces of the primal code in place. However, during our Primal Dig session, we uncovered a few areas that require some pruning.

primal-code-patrick-hanlon-1.jpgFor us, it was easy to relay our creation story, leader, nonbelievers, sacred words and rituals (does happy hour count?) to Hanlon, but we all seemed stumped by our creed and icons. And that’s our homework — to clarify these pieces of our code.

ROI is the first Primal Branding Certified Agency and we are qualified to help your brand create its own primal code and grow a community of believers.

We encourage you to read Hanlon’s Primal Branding and Social Code. And of course, set up a free strategy session with us! We’ve love to help you create your code!



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