From good to bad
Kobe Bryant, a notoriously polarising NBA player, has often been perceived as a “villain”. And he’s happily embraced the role in league, relishing the constant boos and heavy despise by rival teams and fans. If you’re a Lakers fan, you love him. If you’re a fan of the other 29 teams in the NBA, you hate
To be a brand is to be recognisable -- to stand for something. And Kobe Bryant has done just this.
A few games into this season, Bryant formally announced he would be retiring at the end of the season after 20 years – and 5 championships – in the league. This incidentally prompted a “farewell tour – a first in the league.
Astonishingly, he has been well received when making his final appearances. Seemingly bitter rivals have created heartwarming dedications and tributes to him, often played out before games.
People are sad they are losing their “villain”, so much that they are cheering the villain/the bad guy on. Why? He represents something.
Now, I'm not suggesting that you tip your business values on their head and suddenly act the role of the villain, here. But what I am suggesting is that you have a prominent, defined, recognisable brand. And if you're willing to take the brunt of whatever consequences arise, you will become known for something.
And you know what? Kobe’s bad guy persona has finally cracked. He’s smiling and joking.
He’s a good guy. He’s THE good guy.