Branding thought of the day — It’s just Ikea

We had a client meeting the other day and he remarked that he liked some shelving we had and asked about it. My response was “Oh, it’s just Ikea.” Later I remarked to Ewa how that is probably not the desired response people at the corporate offices of Ikea would like to hear. But the phrase says quite a lot. “Just Ikea.” You know exactly what I mean. Ikea is not synonymous with luxury or quality, rather its brand embodies cheap practicality. Ikea is nothing special but will certainly do when you’re looking to getaway with having a semblance of taste in your furnishings with negligible investment. I don’t think this reality makes for great brand positioning for Ikea. It would be quite a challenge to change the perception of Ikea from disposable furniture to something of enduring quality. Ironically they do have a decent design aesthetic, which to me means there is some hope for better quality. The only real answer for Ikea is to make its products with better materials. I particularly hate self- assembly (because I’m so terrible at it). It’s difficult to imagine the day when I’d pridefully name-check my Ikea furniture. For now, as always, it’s just Ikea.

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