Disruptive. The buzzword that seems to be influencing our brand strategies more than any other word.

From boardrooms to coffee shops, it seems that this word has become an emphasis for how we relate to our audience. Somehow being disruptive has become desirable.

Business models can be disruptive. Both new-market and low-end disruptions occur at an industry-facing level. But disruptive business models don’t presume that the brand should be disruptive. Brands should never be designed to be disruptive.

Being disruptive isn’t a strategy. In fact, it’s an anti-strategy. Shock and awe brands fail to sustain their connection with real people because people don’t connect with disruption, they connect with delight.

Think about it. Do you want to be disrupted by a brand? Or would you rather be delighted. Which one of the “d” words draws you in?

Delight is about finding spaces beyond your brand promise to create joy and surprise.

Simply overachieving on the basic delivery of your brand experience doesn’t move the needle too far in deepening your relationship with your customers. Instead, it’s about finding intentional junctures in your involvement with your customers to create delight.

Send 10 customers a personal ‘just because’ gift. Include your audience on the design of a new product and show them how their input was used. Give a surprise 5% discount on the next invoice.

The point is to define the moment of delight and align your brand to release it to your audience.

It doesn’t have to be large. It doesn’t have to be expensive. It just has to be intentionally about strengthening the bond between your brand and your audience through delight.

Don’t be disruptive. Be intentional about delight.