Everything You’re Not

Ryan bio photo
Ryan Swartz
Creative Director
June 20, 2018
June 20, 2018

I have a 52-mile, one-way commute into the office.

Yes, I love it here that much. On my drives, I’m not a big radio guy and prefer to listen to my Spotify playlists. However, a coworker recently made me a mixtape (it was actually a CD but that’s neither here nor there). There is a song on said CD titled “Everything I Am” by Kanye West.

I know…roll your eyes if you must, but this isn’t your typical everyone-loves-to-hate-Kanye moment.

Essentially, it’s a song about making choices and knowing who you are. The payoff line in the chorus is,“Everything I’m not, made me everything I am”. After a few times hearing this line, my head couldn’t help but start putting it into the context of creative and brands.

At re:group, when we start working with a client, we do a lot of work up front. This can be anything from learning about your industry as a whole to finding out what all your competitors look and sound like. We then lay all this out and essentially figure out everything you’re not. We can then compare your particular company’s values, mission and goals to what we discovered and then recommend who you are, how you fit into the marketplace and how you can be different and stand out.

I think it’s a common question most companies ask themselves when at a crossroads, “Who are we and who do we want to be?” I think the better question to ask is who don’t you want to be. While it isn’t as dramatic as interrupting someone’s Grammy speech onstage, it could be just the perfect way to find out your new company direction and point of difference in your industry.

Thanks, Kanye.