The Sandblog: Where we share the toys of inspiring thoughts, ideas and insights - all in one place
Created on March 11, 2014

Why Chinese Punks, Russian Skaters, Vegan Cupcakes, And Authentic Storytelling Are The Future Of Vans

By Suzy Rounce, Art Director, Sandbox

Vans has summed it up in one headline. They have established such a strong brand over the years that they have created a documentary series called 'Living Off the Wall' that continues to establish it's roots in fostering youth culture.

They are using story and content that is already out there and putting it to good use. Vans realizes that brand truly is how people feel about you in their gut, not what you say you are.

Palladini actually wrote the book on Vans' identity and says the key to the brand's success is its heritage and organic ties to youth culture. "The brand has always been for people who are a bit anti-establishment, subculture, that's why things like skateboarding and punk rock organically found their way to our brand," says Palladini. "The company founder never set out to get Black Flag and Tony Alva wearing his shoes. They found us."

If a company can do this themselves because they have established such a strong brand that has developed through diligent and relentless brand work then good on them, however most companies need help getting to this point. Storytelling is what will set you apart from your competition.

"We don't have to sit down with an advertising agency and brainstorm made-up concepts to tell the story of our brand, we just need to find creative ways to tell the stories that are already out there."

Using what you have is a great place to start but the magic happens in how that message is crafted and released to the world… and that isn't always so obvious. See the videos here and read the full article from CoCreate.


Brand Issues