Rogers’ “Next is Now” – Information Overload or Smart Branding?

by Jordan Richardson on April 30, 2010

Over at Rogers’ RedBoard there’s a lot of enthusiasm about “Next is Now,” a brand spanking new video clip that was launched at the Rogers shareholders meeting.

Technology’s role in a changing world has always been vital and Rogers CEO Nadir Mohamed made sure to tell the shareholders at the annual general meeting Thursday that his company was going to play a crucial role in that change. According to the post at RedBoard, “Mohamed said Rogers’ goal in a connected world is to become the destination for Canadians amid this rapid change.”

The video clip itself, viewable at this link, is showy and impressive. Comments on RedBoard range from the peculiarly laudatory, as though the commenter had just viewed an Oscar-nominated movie, to the unconvinced. Colour me in the latter camp.

As a film, music and culture critic making a living largely online these days, I am only too aware of the changing world.

The Rogers video clip, set to music by Young Galaxy, tells us that “we create more information every two days than in the history of the planet before 2004.” This statistic is an odd one, to say the least, and says nothing about the value of the information or the context. Of course, Rogers’ goal here is to impress upon the viewer the sheer mass of information available in today’s changing world.

Next up, the clip dotingly informs us that “it would take 28 years without sleeping to watch the video uploaded to YouTube this week.” Again, this says nothing about the value of those videos. Millions of video clips of babies bumping into doors or people lighting themselves on fire don’t do much for me.

The video rolls along in this fashion, upping the ante with a slew of statistics about Facebook users and how it now takes 10 minutes to download The Godfather even though it “still takes three hours to watch” it. Apparently while I was watching the video, 150,000 tweets were sent on Twitter.

The overwhelming storm of information presented by the video isn’t lost on me, but the point of this “Next is Now” brand is. As Mohamed proudly told his shareholders, “Increasingly customers are buying based on brand, not product. They’re buying into companies that will offer seamless delivery of customer-driven experiences in a connected world.”

The idea of people buying brands over products is nothing new, clearly, and has the ultimate in corporate deception ever since people decided that certain brand names of jeans made them “more popular.”

It’s clear that Rogers is hoping “Next is Now” will push people to seek out their brand to help cope with the overwhelming flood of information that’s out there. Unfortunately, nothing in the video directly or specifically outlines Rogers’ plans to help with that. Of course, Mohamed and Co’s wish is that we simply “trust the brand.”

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