Supremo brands

What a new world order means for supremo brands

Harvard PR

15 Dec 2017

Supremo brands believe their purpose is to give each of their customers a unique and life-changing experience in a way no other brand can. Confident and charismatic, they engender intense devotion and evangelism in their customers. They don’t care if those outside their ecosystem don’t ‘get’ them – they have no interest in changing people’s opinions. But in a world where consumers are looking for partnership and collaboration, what does that mean for our supremos?

A tech-driven world

Tech companies today are facing more scrutiny than ever. Adapting to the growing weight of consumer expectation that comes with this hasn’t proved to be an easy challenge, even as they are enjoying more popularity and mainstream adoption than ever before. It was this dichotomy that prompted us to undertake our research: “Making Technology Personal: Have you got what it takes?” Against the backdrop of a tough narrative, how does a vibrant sector continue to shine and engage the people it needs to reach? Part of this includes understanding the different types of brand personas tech companies fit into. Based on whether they take an inclusive or exclusive approach to engagement, and whether they position their social purpose as solving problems or creating positive experiences, we derived four brand types:
  1. Gurus
  2. Supremos
  3. Entertainers
  4. Builders
Check out our report to learn more about the four types. Supremos veer towards the exclusive side of engagement, with a focus on creating positive experiences over problem-solving. Perhaps the most notable example in the tech sector is Apple, a brand that has defined itself over the years as a leader in the pack, with a closed ecosystem and notoriety for secrecy around launches.

The collaboration conundrum

For supremos, the key takeaway from the research is a move towards collaboration. When it comes to new product development, 74% of 16-24-year-olds think technology brands should ask the public for input when developing new products, above the general average of 60%. Half believe collaboration will make the product better. Today’s consumers – both B2B and B2C – want to feel that the voice they now have in our more social world is not just being heard but acted on and that their experiences and ideas count. Many B2B tech firms talk about ‘co-creating’ with customers to create bespoke solutions to specific problems rather than simply selling one-size-fits-all products off the shelf. Our research suggested a broader appetite for this approach from tech brands.

A supreme future?

What does this mean for supremos? It doesn’t mean that ‘big reveal’ product launches are a thing of the past, but it does mean consumers are expecting to see their input reflected and would appreciate a shout-out. They still want to be surprised, but they’d also like to be thanked. For supremo brands this means honing in on their customer comms. There is no need for them to broaden their audience further than that. After all, not only is that approach a key facet of their brand persona, but half of our audience told us customer-first engagement is what they want. There is a need to develop a deeper relationship with their loyal customers, however. One that sees them involved in the product process and makes them feel listened to. Simple steps, from inviting them to pre-launch events to engaging with them on social channels, are the answer. Will supremos reign supreme? Only time will tell. Download our full report or get in touch with us at to hear more about what this means for your comms