At the studio, we routinely run into the challenge of having to explain the abstract components of branding and how they directly impact how organizations operate. To the majority of people, branding is generally about how attractive a business looks. This leads mostly to the generalization of companies’ brand visions. What we love to do here at Vidi is connect our expertise to our love for iconic stories told in pop culture — that way, our thoughts can live as more than words, but be visual and connective. Let’s talk about how one of the silver screen’s most infamous CGI villains shows us the power of having an effectively crafted vision.
One of the best villains of all time
It required a 21 film build up for a loyal MCU audience before we were forced to finally confront Thanos with the characters we’d been groomed to love. During the time of Avengers: Infinity War, I remember hearing so many people resonate with the Mad Titan’s goals. It made sense. This is what made Thanos an effective antagonist - people understood him and empathized with him, even after wiping out half the universe (possibly the worst crime any villain has ever committed in the history of storytelling). But it’s not that he physically muscled people into hearing him out or even used the infinity gauntlet to coerce the audience towards his sentiment - it was about his vision. You could feel it in his computer-generated eyes, his tonality, and his words to describe his own philosophy and experience. It was real for Thanos, thus making it real for us.
The power of a clear vision
Every good organization needs one. What is the reality in the future that your brand will create and for who? What will form an empathy between your brand and your audience? Here’s a breakdown of how Thanos expressed and represented his vision to maximize his mission:
1. Clear, Measurable Goal
Collect all Infinity Stones → Remove ½ life forms from existence.
2. Preach the gospel, round up the advocates
Thanos had a squad who believed in the vision just as strongly as he did. And they also believed in him being the one to carry it out. They all ultimately died for that belief.
3. Shake off the haters
Those pesky Avengers :) An easy indicator of a clear vision is the appearance of those who believe and do the opposite of your philosophy. Don't let this deter you but do allow it to channel your gratitude and acceptance towards the idea that there's something for everyone. If you let the haters disturb your process, it becomes a detriment and distraction from your freedom to create.
4. Do it yourself
There will be times that others cannot match your conviction, these are opportunities to show the will behind your vision. Sometimes 37-year-old LeBron has to drop 56 points (see Warriors @ Lakers 3/5/22)
If your organization is looking for people to put their whole selves behind it, an articulated vision is one of the most powerful tools to generate connectivity. Whether a vision is broad or specific, the most important part is that it makes sense to the person.
When a vision makes sense, the person can then choose whether they want to be a part of that vision or against it.
When Philosophy Meets Emotion
When all is said and done, Thanos was a Mad Titan driven by an obsession for balance. It became personal for him to the point he woke up early every day to get to work. When we find this clarity in vision, we are now creating an access point to make ourselves emotionally involved with our craft – where our deepest desires and aspirations are achievable through the building of this vision. It's a feeling, really. And if this feeling is not yet familiar, do give compassion to your self. It takes a healthy blend of struggle, failure, and persistence to whittle your vision down to a simple destination.
Visions are hardly "set-it and forget it." If you feel like your vision is in need of some stress testing, validation, or just outside ears for listening - I'm an Easy Luck coffee away.