Can a Brand Be Too Clearly Defined?

The answer is yes, and how much it matters depends on who your audience is.

For a variety of reasons, baby boomers (the current fundraising sweet spot) respond to brands and to marketing in fundamentally different ways than do millennials.

According to psychologists “The younger minds tend to see reality in simpler terms than aging minds do, and they tend to see things in terms of absolute states or conditions: either something is or it is not.”

They prefer what marketers call “absolute positioning,” with all i’s dotted and t’s crossed.

Older brains tend to respond better to “conditional positioning,” that is, where the messaging is elastic enough to let them use their own experience and imagination to fill in the gaps. Evidence is mounting that when it comes to boomers, values and symbolism trumps crystal clarity almost every time.