(Paid Advertising)

Disruptive Brands: Breaking the Usual Pattern

Ryan Chute
Ryan Chute
December 2, 2022
Disruptive Brands: Breaking the Usual Pattern

In today's rapidly changing digital world, brands face the challenge of staying relevant and competitive. But as much as businesses want to stay ahead of the curve, staying ordinary isn't going to cut it. Instead, disruptive brands are breaking the usual pattern and changing how business is done. These companies boldly challenge existing conventions, taking risks and pushing boundaries to stand out. Imagine taking a traditional approach and turning it on its head – this is the heart of disruptive brands. From innovative products and services to creating marketing strategies, these companies are transforming how their respective markets operate. Nevertheless, if you're not disrupting, you stay caught up. As such, disruptive brands are having a significant impact on the business world. They are reshaping how we think about industry standards, inspiring entrepreneurs, and pushing the status quo. So how can you become a disruptive brand? Here are some brands to look to for inspiration:

Brands of Yesterday

Brands of Yesterday

In the words of the late brand expert Wally Olins, brands were merely symbols of product consistency. In other words, branding used to be all about the product. In today's world, however, brands have evolved into something much more powerful that can influence people's feelings and thoughts. That said, brands must now strive to be more than just symbols on the outside of a product. Disruptive brands of the 21st century must be built upon community, values, and belonging. Businesses can create strong customer relationships and establish a distinct identity by investing in branding initiatives. From designing a logo to creating engaging content, businesses can leverage branding strategies to build long-term relationships with their customers. At Wizard of Ads®, we create disruptive brands by engaging customers emotionally. Backed by our data-driven approach, we develop unique branding campaigns that capture customer attention and make persistent connections. We understand that in today’s competitive market, businesses must deploy proactive strategies to remain ahead of their competitors. Book a call with Ryan Chute today to learn how our team can help build your brand.

What are Disruptive Brands?

Alongside offline marketing and branding techniques, disruptive companies offer customers a new level of engagement. They create innovative campaigns that challenge traditional assumptions and inspire customer loyalty through an emotional connection. By creating memorable experiences and connecting with customers, disruptive brands stand out from their competitors and build long-lasting relationships. So what does this mean for your business? Unless you disrupt the status quo, you risk becoming stagnant and irrelevant. That means you can still abandon traditional marketing and branding methods. For example, you can still use media outlets like TV, radio, and print to reach your target audience.

However, you should also explore more innovative approaches to build customer relationships and give them something unique. This could include using interactive and personalized content, bold and daring visuals, and leveraging technology to capture customers' attention. These efforts will enable you to stand out from your competitors, create a lasting impression on consumers, and increase loyalty. If done correctly, you can start conversations with potential buyers and open up opportunities for new business. Ultimately, it's essential that you interpret the needs of your target audience and create content that resonates with them. With a combination of creative strategies, you can take control of the conversation and become an industry leader.

Disruptive Products and Companies

Disruptive Products and Companies

With all this talk about disruptive brands, you're probably wondering what it looks like to be disruptive. I mean, it's not like there's a magical formula for disruption. However, no matter what your product or service looks like, there are certain traits that disruptive companies and products share. Here are disruptive brands to look to for inspiration in 2023:

Sim Cards

The sim card, first developed in Germany in 1991, is a revolutionary product that has completely changed how people communicate. In fact, there are more sim cards on Earth than humans. And while sim cards have become a staple of everyday life, there was a time when the idea seemed outlandish. That said, in order to become a disruptive brand, you must be willing to take risks. Think about it, if sim cards had never been developed, the world of communication would look very different today. Nonetheless, don't be afraid to challenge the status quo. And if you're lucky, you may develop the next revolutionary product.


Mcdonald's, also known as the fast food giant, has also mastered the art of disruption. In the 1950s, McDonald's introduced fast food to America and changed the restaurant industry forever. However, as the fast food giant grew, so did its innovative approaches. From the United States to China, McDonald's has rapidly adapted its menu and services to fit into the local culture. For example, the company introduced a Karubi Burger in Japan and a McSpicy Paneer in India. These strategic moves not only allowed McDonald's to survive the competition but also made the brand a global success. The most important lesson from McDonald's journey, however, is that they utilized the same branding despite their menu changes. This consistent branding allows their customers to easily recognize the company no matter what country they are in.


With customer experience on the rise as a differentiating factor between companies, GAP's logo change in 2010 sparked considerable debate. Unlike McDonald's, GAP didn’t introduce new items or services but instead introduced a new, unrecognizable logo. The goal was to make the logo look more modern and young, in order to better reflect its brand image. However, the move backfired immediately, with customers and the media taking to social media in droves to express their disapproval. GAP was quick to respond and revert back to its original logo. While the company may have lost money in the process, showing that they take customer feedback seriously drove consumer respect. That said, the incident serves as an important reminder that your consumers are in the driver's seat. If you aren't appealing to your target audience, there is no way to succeed in the long run.


Nike has been an industry leader in the realm of branding for years. Through cleverly designed advertisements, catchy slogans, and celebrity endorsements, the company has built a strong reputation for disruptive innovation. That was, until Nike’s 1985 release of their new Air Jordan sneakers. Although the shoes were a massive hit, they also sparked a debate about the NBA's uniform regulations. At the time, the league had a policy prohibiting players from wearing shoes that did not match their team's colors. That said, the NBA charged a $5000 fine every game that Michael Jordan was found wearing the Air Jordans. How did Nike react? They paid the fine and encouraged Micheal Jordan to continue wearing the shoes. The move paid off in huge dividends for the company. In fact, the controversy surrounding the shoes made them even more desirable, and people were lining up to buy them. The lesson we can learn from Nike can be applied to everyone, whether you have thousands to spend or not. That said, don't be afraid to push the boundaries. You never know what kind of success you could find.


Uber is another company that has used a daring strategy to great success. In the face of existing taxi companies and regulations, Uber pushed ahead with its innovative ride-sharing platform. Combining transportation and technology, Uber offers customers a safe, convenient way to get around. It didn't take long for Uber's services to become popular, and it now operates in thousands of cities worldwide. Like Nike, one of the keys to Uber's success was that it wasn't afraid to challenge the status quo. Their willingness to put two industries together and develop a whole new business model has been extremely successful.

Credit Karma

Finally, Credit Karma, a financial technology company, is an excellent example of how a business can revolutionize an industry. Before Credit Karma's arrival, consumers had limited options when it came to understanding their credit scores. Falsely advertised as "free", many services charged hidden, recurring fees. Credit Karma challenged this by providing consumers with free access to their credit scores and valuable financial advice. They also made it much easier for consumers to compare different lenders, such as credit card companies and banks. This allowed for more transparent and competitive rates. Because of this, Credit Karma has become a trusted source worldwide for those who need help with their finances. As a result of their innovative approach and willingness to fix broken processes, they have become a leading financial institution.

What Makes a Company Stand-out from the crowd_

What Makes a Company Stand-out From the Crowd?

Today, disruptive brands have a lot to offer consumers and the business landscape. From breaking the status quo to challenging existing conventions, companies that stand out from the crowd are doing something right. But how can you follow in their footsteps? What sets a successful brand apart from the rest? For starters, you must set yourself apart from what everybody else is doing, even if it is considered unconventional. Companies that offer unique products, experiences, or innovative services, often have a distinct edge. It’s also important to fully commit to sharing something that no one else can offer. If a company is passionate about its product or service, that enthusiasm will show. Finally, don't be afraid to take risks and be creative. Copying or imitating others will only make it harder for you to stand out. To truly succeed, a company must create something authentic, innovative, and inspiring. And we can help you do just that. At Wizard of Ads®, we help businesses create unique, customized marketing plans that help them stand out from the competition. Through ad and content marketing strategies, as well as data analysis and other methods, we help businesses reach their goals. So when you’re ready to take your business to the next level, we’re here to help. To learn more about your one-way ticket to industry disruption, book a call with Ryan Chute today. Together, we can turn your business into a force that stands out from the crowd.

Ryan Chute
Ryan Chute

Helping small businesses become BIG brands with a holistic marketing strategy that speaks the same language across all sales and marketing channels.

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Frequently asked questions

Questions? We’ve got answers.

Who does the Wizard of Ads® for Services work with?

Wizard of Ads® for Services work with healthy and growing businesses hungry to grow by multiples, like you.

You are ready, willing, and able to grow your business. You are open to change and are seeking a distinctive angle of approach to gain the time and attention of a too-busy public.

You know that lasting relationships take time, patience, and good energy to nurture and cultivate. We carefully enter into every arrangement with the intention of working with you for as long as you own your business. You prefer lasting partnerships.

You are already a solid operator. You have successfully grown your business and appreciate the impact the right brand story will have to get to the next level in your operation. You know a strong relational message takes time to gain momentum, but it’s worth the one-time short-term discomfort for the long-term gains.

Marketing cannot fix a failing business.

We accelerate what’s already happening in a business. If your business is on the rocks, marketing will only speed up the inevitable.  

You’re focused on lasting change that leads to exponential, profitable growth, not just sales at any cost. Intuitively, you know that communication that enhances every element of your customer's experience and your employee's culture is the key to your success.

Our advertising model works best for services who have a long purchase cycle and sell a more expensive product like jewelry, furniture, luxury products, and automotive.

How does the Wizard of Ads® for Services charge?

Traditional full service marketing agencies are designed to capture the greatest amount of revenue from a client, regardless of results. Every last item is billed and expensed to the client. Typical agency fees can represent a whopping 55% of the entire advertising budget. That means a $5 million dollar advertising budget, you would spend $2.75 million on agency fees.

Think of Wizard of Ads® for Services as the Anti-Agency.

Our income is not tied to your advertising budget. Our income is exclusively tied to your growth. Our goal is to maximize your advertising impact with the lowest reasonable spend. This allows you to spend only what is necessary or to put extra horsepower into aggressively growing in your market.

The genius of this model is that it perfectly aligns our motivations as true partners for exponential profitable growth without the pain of being unaffordable. Ultimately, we are confident in taking the risk of being underpaid in the first few years because we know the results always speak for themselves.

Next, we do not accept commissions, referral fees, kickbacks, or other compensation from any service providers we recommend or engage for production work. Most agencies do. This includes the 15% agency commission for media buying. This approach is considerably different from the compensation plan employed by most advertising agencies, as it eliminates any potential conflicts of interest and allows us to focus our entire attention on helping you grow your business profitably as a true partner. For example, a $500,000 annual media buy would involve a $75,000 commission that we would have removed directly from your media providers' invoices.

This is the perfect pricing model for services who sell goods with a long purchase cycle.

By tying ourselves to gross revenue, we only have one motivation. Your motivation. We have no motivation to convince you to spend more money on marketing than what is necessary, and since we are a variable expense to sales, we NEVER become too expensive to have us on your team.

In almost every case, we end up lowering the amount of money you spend. We will stay within your planned marketing budget, including your media spend, production, and our Annual Fee. Add on the fact that you get any and all commissions back for media buys and various services provided by outside providers, and you will actually save money having us on your team.

Don’t forget, we have the largest buying power in North America for media buying, meaning for every dollar you spend buying media, we only spend 27 cents on average. This stretches your reach, impact, and frequency in a way no other agency (or yourself) can achieve on your own, saving you hundreds of thousands of dollars, eventually millions, every single year.

Clients who heed our advice and embrace our Marketing Strategy quickly add $1 million in incremental revenue to their business, making your investment a smart bet and a bit of a no-brainer.  

There is no longer any guesswork, hope, or fear that our marketing strategies are going to work. If our client’s are able to abandon any limiting beliefs about marketing, deliver operational excellence, and play the long game, our marketing strategy will accelerate their profitable growth.

Wizard of Ads® for Services pricing model is based solely on the top line revenue of your company. It consists of an Upfront Fee and an Annual Fee. These fees are inclusive of scheduled travel, services, and all other expenditures as outlined in the Consulting Agreement.

The Upfront Fee covers the intensive Uncovery Process, the first year’s Media Buy, the Creative Process, and the Market Research while the Annual Fee goes toward implementation, ongoing creative and consulting, and next year's media buy. You get a team of 3.5 people, with direct access to a top tier Creative Lead and Media Buyer, and on-demand access to me as your Master Strategist. You will also have a full-time Account Manager keeping everything on track.

While the upfront does have an initial pinch, it is easy to amortize the investment over the many years we will be working together to grow your business. Wizard of Ads® retain clients for 10 years, on average. The sale of the business is the number one reason for termination. We actively terminate the bottom 1% of clients who are unwilling or unable to follow our strategies.

Wizard of Ads® for Services believes that all rewards should be directly correlated to the success of our clients. This means that the Wizard of Ads® for Services only receives a raise when the company achieves growth. For example, if your gross sales for the year have increased by 25%, the Annual Fee you pay us in the following year will also be increased by 25%. Likewise, if your gross sales decrease, our Annual Fee will decrease by the same percentage during the following year.

This is an exceptionally easy and fair way to track and reward success. This model was developed by Wizard of Ads® over 35 years ago and has served us well because it serves our clients well.

As a rule of thumb, we take the risk of working for considerably less than our actual value in the first few years as we help accelerate growth. This means you need to be willing to pay us exceptionally well when you start doing even better.

When should I engage The Wizard of Ads® for Services?

There are four key revenue stages for engagement with the Wizard of Ads® for Services.

  1. Under $3.6 million in revenue
  2. Between $3.6 and $10 million in revenue
  3. Between $10 and $20 million in revenue
  4. Over $20 million in revenue

Under $3.6 million in revenue is an investment in your brand. This will serve you well in establishing your brand story early on and help you with your name, logo, and truck wrap design. It's easier to create pictures from a story than it is to make a story based on pre-drawn pictures. You'll be glad you did. Everyone on a fast path to growth is.

Most clients start with Wizard of Ads® for Services between $3.6 and $10 million in revenue. They have often seen a natural ceiling with their leads for demand service and are looking for ways to push past the ceiling. This can only be done with a properly executed brand strategy, specifically in mass media with a sticky story.

Between $10 and $20 million in revenue, Wizard of Ads® for Services has some natural economies of scale. This is a sweet spot where Wizard of Ads® for Services can offer some added value in getting the ball rolling.

Over $20 million in revenue is actually the lowest cost point of entry as a percentage of revenue, but not the cheapest time to start with the Wizard of Ads® for Services. Leveraging all economies of scale aside, we have been left out of the upside along the way, so engaging when over $20 million in revenue means we have to mend a lot of fences damaged along the way. This is also where clients see significant savings in their media buys and production costs.

There are also three market sizes to consider.

  • Primary Markets are the top 50 cities in America.
  • Secondary Markets are the smaller cities in America.
  • Tertiary Markets are the more rural trade areas in America.

When considering an engagement with The Wizard of Ads® for Services, consider what size market you are in. For example, a $3.6 million company in a Primary Market will struggle to get the necessary reach needed to make a splash. You either have to be more patient than a larger company or spend more money to accelerate your reach.

Alternatively, a $5 million company in a Secondary Market will look like a pretty darn big fish in a medium-sized pond.

A $20 Million company in a Primary Market will feel like a $50 million company using our strategies to potential customers.

The key to remember is that the earlier you start with the Wizard of Ads® for Services, the lower the investment to get started. As they say, the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is today.

Are production costs included in your fees?

Offline, the Wizard of Ads® for Services Creative Lead will create the ad copy, cast the voice actors, source the production house, direct the performance, pick the music bed, manage all the edits, and provide you with the completed ad for final approval before sending to air on your behalf. This is included in our fees.

You pay for the production house, actors, royalty-free music, and jingles directly to avoid any potential for markups, commissions, or management fees.

We have many friends in the industry that give our clients good deals due to the large volume of work we provide them. We will introduce you to them.

Online, the Wizard of Ads® for Services Digital Lead will either coordinate production in-house or work with your preferred digital vendors. The scope of work will be determined and fees will reflect the scope of work to be done.

How long before a brand-forward strategy starts working?

In approximately three months of activation, we’ll just be getting live on air. In six months (3 months on air), you’ll be getting anecdotal feedback from people that you are being heard, but there will be no direct line to revenue.

After 6 months on the air, you’ll think you made the biggest mistake of your life signing up for this branding nonsense. After 9 months on the air (12 months in) you’ll see the light at the end of the tunnel.

At 12 full months on the air, you’ll know why you did this branding thing. Two years from now, we'll be clinking champagne flutes as you wonder why you didn’t do this sooner.

How long before we’re live?

The general guideline is 70-120 days, depending on the level of production needed and if there is a name change to your business.

This includes an onsite visit, a deep dive into research, and getting things created, negotiated, approved, produced, and live on the air.

  • Uncovery - 15-30 days based on travel. 1-2 days onsite.
  • Research - 30-60 days based on the scope of work.
  • Creative and Media Buy Process - 45 to 60 days
  • Offline Production - 15 days for radio. 30 - 60 days for television.
  • Online Production (if switching) - 60 days

This means planning for roughly 90 to 120 days in the proper development and production of a completely unique Marketing Strategy before anything hits the airwaves.

Are you exclusive?

Creatively, yes. During the term of this Agreement, all Creative Partners assigned to your Account shall not engage, directly or indirectly, as an employee, officer, manager, partner, consultant, agent, owner, or in any other capacity, in any competition of the client, including any company engaged in marketing consulting.

For clarity, the Creative Partner is defined as the individual Wizard of Ads® Partners who is responsible for creating your creative strategy and ongoing creative copy. Competition is defined as companies that engage in the same industry and business units (e.g., Furniture, Automotive, etc.) as you. The market area is defined as the area where the marketing message naturally reaches through DMA or 60 miles from the city center of the client's service area(s).

Naturally, we exclude any potential future competition in markets where you are not currently active at the date of signing.

We do not limit Media Buyers in any market. Media Buyers get better deals for larger volumes, making it beneficial for the client to have the Media Buyer available to do as many buys as possible to secure the best deals on the client’s behalf.

Do you do digital marketing?

Wizard of Ads® for Services can provide a host of digital marketing solutions for services. Wizard of Ads® has specialized Partners that provide digital services that serve services effectively. Under no circumstances will digital marketing services be offered without Wizard of Ads® for Services core solution.

It is most likely that Wizard of Ads® for Services will work with your existing digital partners and suppliers. If you do not have a reliable digital provider, we would be happy to introduce you to a number of great providers that play nice with Wizards.

Do you do jingles?

Wizard of Ads® for Services can assist you in getting a jingle for your business. Like any other tactical element of a marketing strategy, we do not produce a jingle for the sake of a jingle.

If you do not have a story or a strategic reason to have a jingle...or an ad campaign to tie it to, do not waste your hard-earned money on a jingle. You are wasting your time and money.

When you do build a single unified marketing strategy that incorporates a jingle for a specific (often scientific) reason, we have a Jingle Wizard who has studied the art and science of jingle design.

He will score you an original, royalty-free jingle, including professional singers, musicians, and producers. He will not knock off a generic jingle from a publicly available music bed that sounds like everyone else's jingle.

Your jingle will serve a very specific reason and produce a very specific result. Have you guessed how much we love jingles yet?

Who owns the copyrights?

Wizard of Ads® for Services owns copyrights for two very specific reasons. We also provide a fair use clause in all contracts to ensure you are in no way limited to the access of your creative works, whether you are working with us or not.

The first reason we own your copyright is to ensure that we do not have to go up against our own creative works in other markets we serve. This means you are not allowed to lend, give, borrow, tweak, rent, lease, or sell your creative works to any other company at any time.

The second reason we own your copyright is that we can establish a one-time value for your creative works in the event that someone steals the content. Upon selling you the copyrights, you can go after the perpetrator for theft and make a considerable bounty in a slam dunk case.

Here is how Wizard of Ads® word the fair use of your copyright for as long as your business is in operation:

All writing and/or marketing materials we create for you are not works-for-hire. Wizard of Ads® for Services hereby irrevocably grants you, and your successors in interest, the non-exclusive, royalty-free, non-transferable, and worldwide right to use the Works in connection with the marketing of your business pursuant to the Marketing Strategy for so long as your business is operational.
How do I measure brand results?

There are a number of interesting ways to measure results. Some people like to get unique identifying telephone numbers, or create branded URLs that redirect to landing pages or the website. However, much of this is a waste of time and energy as it never tells the true story of the brand journey and how it affected the decision-making process.

Other indicators of brand effectiveness include tracking new customers, reactivated customers, or running a brand equity survey to get a sense of your share of mind. Digitally you will see direct search increase, which cannot be affected by anything digital, as well as branded keyword inquiries increase. You’ll, of course, need to get your digital people to add these to your campaigns if you hope to see an increase in conversions.

Wizard of Ads® for Services racks the simplest of indicators. Top line revenue. When your branding takes effect, and the company responds in kind from the phone call or form fill-on, top-line revenue will increase. Efficacy is plotted on a T12, and total lead volume from all sources is tracked.

12 things you should know before signing up.
  1. Quality relationships take time. Branding is a long-term strategy. That’s why most services do it wrong, or not at all. There is always a lag between the start of the new campaign and the time it takes your customers to connect the dots. You MUST BE READY, WILLING, AND ABLE to endure this lag period. In our experience, the lag is typically 6 to 9 months, depending on how competitive the marketplace is, your company’s reputation, your budget in relation to reach, and the eight uncontrollable environmental factors. During this time, we will be helping you implement a transition plan to ease the pain. The good news is that this lag only happens once.
  2. Decisions by Committee. We completely reject the notion of decisions by committee. We work with a single, courageous decision-maker. We welcome decision influencers, but we only look to the Owner for the final decision. All decision-makers and influencers must be involved in the Uncovery and Marketing Strategy Presentation if they want to offer input in the future. It is critical that we have a 100% fully approved plan that can be defended and championed by all leaders in the organization.  
  3. Proven Strategy. That means we are not the low-cost provider. With hundreds of service clients and a playbook of strategic devices, tools, and tactics, this isn’t a guessing game for us. We know what to do to make your goods and services appealing to potential buyers. If you can deliver the goods, we can  build the relationships. If you are uncomfortable with the idea that you are paying us less now so that you can pay us considerably more once revenues allow, please do not commit. We intend to be your true partners, in sickness and in health...so long as you own your business.
  4. Automatic Payments. Everything is on automatic payments. If you struggle with managing cash flow, figure that out in your business first. We accept all major credit cards and ACH payments.
  5. We Cause Problems. If you don’t have a capacity issue now, I promise you will in about 9 months. Let’s deal with recruitment out of the gate as part of your comprehensive marketing strategy.
  6. We Own the Copyrights. All writing and/or marketing materials we create for you are not works-for-hire. We irrevocably grant you, and your successors in interest, the non-exclusive, royalty-free, non-transferable, and worldwide right to use the Works in connection with the marketing of your business pursuant to the Marketing Strategy for so long as your business is operational.
  7. Brand Building. We will be steering you to limit the use of discounts, rebates, coupons, and sales to attract clients. We know this feels counterintuitive to many, and we will clarify our reasoning. Rest assured, we have considerable experience in creating similar offers that are not damaging to your profitability, your brand’s integrity, and your preferable long-term client relations.
  8. Creative Authority. We must have creative authority over the words. You can accept copy as written or reject it outright, but you cannot modify the words yourself. If you do not like something as written, we are happy to discuss it and make the necessary change to maintain the integrity and intention of the words chosen. Alternatively, we will scrap the concept and create new copy that you are happy to get behind 100%.
  9. Proprietary Algorithm. The media buy must be structured in a very specific way, including running a full 52-week schedule. It is based on brain chemistry, not P&Ls. Once we have committed to the buy, it’s important to avoid adjustments unless they are calculated additions.
  10. Knucklehead Factor. You should expect knuckleheads. For example, when you start running ads that are certain to get attention, you need the courage to continue running those ads, even when you receive complaints. We celebrate complaints. It means we’ve made people feel.
  11. Digital Weasels. In about three months from the time your advertising campaign hits the airways, your digital marketers will show you a marked increase in direct and organic traffic. Some Digital Marketers will mistakenly claim this success as their own. Done properly, you can continue to spend less and less on digital lead generation by increasing your branded keyword online presence.
  12. Annual Marketing Meetings. Travel permitting, we prefer to hold Annual Marketing Meetings (AMMs) outside your city. Years of experience have taught us that we get better results when decision-makers are outside their sphere of influence, away from the day-to-day distractions of the office.

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