Using the Lifestyle Lens to Build Authentic Brands

March 29, 2018 | By Miriam Stone, Director of Strategy

Lifestyle brands used to be confined to certain industries, such as hospitality, apparel, or beverage. But as brands have gotten more sophisticated—and consumers more discerning—lifestyle brands have cropped up everywhere, disrupting entire industries and setting new standards for how brands compete.

Think about what Warby Parker did for prescription glasses, Beats for headphones, Clif Bar for granola bars, or Salesforce for CRM systems. People don’t just use these brands; they use them to define themselves. These brands made the leap to lifestyle-brand status by authentically connecting with people’s emotions and aspirations and by making their daily lives better.

At Noise 13, we’ve developed our brand-building approach around what we call the “Lifestyle Lens.” We use the Lifestyle Lens to uncover that magic ingredient that sparks an emotional connection and helps people see themselves, and define themselves, within a brand.

We start by looking closely at the target audience and asking (through research, conversation, and intuition):

  • What do they need?
  • How do they want to feel?
  • How do they want to be seen by others?

For example, when we started working with Mobiliti, a car subscription start-up, the brand messaging was focused on how consumers would use the service. We used the Lifestyle Lens to ask how they might also use the brand to define themselves. Here’s what we learned about the target audience:

  • They need more flexibility in car purchase decisions.
  • They want to feel in control and understood; not locked into choices that don’t feel right for them.
  • They want to be seen as someone who doesn’t settle, who seeks out a better way.

This led us to position the brand with the core idea that your car should fit your life, not the other way around. The brand personality is both inviting and unconventional, both aspirational and accessible. Stay tuned for the official launch of the new Mobiliti brand to see the Lifestyle Lens come to life!