Douze Points! Is Eurovision the ultimate High Growth brand blueprint?

Grab your flags and glitter because Eurovision is back. This weekend, all eyes will be on Malmö, Sweden, for an exhibition of Euro Pop and avant-garde choreography. But amidst the sequins and spectacle, could Eurovision be a surprising yet profoundly effective blueprint for high growth brands?

Dare to dream big

Eurovision is defined by embracing the unorthodox. Each year, it showcases a diverse range of talents and musical genres. But the brand has embraced new opportunities wherever they arise. Beginning with only seven countries, others have jumped at the chance to take to the stage, most infamously demonstrated by Australia becoming an honorary European Nation for one week a year since 2015.

Dubious geography aside, there are some clear lessons for high growth brands. For many, it can be tempting to stay within the confines of the scale-up ecosystem for partners, press contacts and customer storytelling. But familiarity can ultimately breed complacency and limit growth potential.

Instead, take cues from Eurovision’s willingness to explore beyond typical storylines and audiences in search of an even bigger impact. In practice, that can mean experimenting with emerging platforms, collaborating with partners outside the immediate commercial environment, or tapping into niche markets through telling industry-specific stories. This has been the recipe for success for brands that are now some of the biggest in the world, for example, the communication platform Slack, which combined grassroots word-of-mouth referrals and larger-scale tech community engagement to attract a diverse range of users.

Put purpose in the spotlight

Each year, Eurovision arguably acts as a snapshot of recent global events. Behind the glitz and extravagance, the contest continues to embody the unifying purpose on which it was founded. High growth brands should take note and underline communications with a meaningful purpose.

Consumers and businesses seek authenticity and social responsibility from brands, and aligning business strategy and communications with these drivers can help high growth brands cultivate customer loyalty. Across varied high-growth brands such as Pragmatic, Ecosia and FairPhone, media coverage is driven by a founding purpose across social justice, industry revolution and sustainability.

A communications strategy underpinned by a purpose-driven approach can set high-growth brands apart in a crowded marketplace.

Let authenticity shine

It’s not Eurovision without extravagant costumes and shock-value. The most memorable performances have played up the power of stunts; just think of Lordi, Finland’s winning act of 2006, who donned monster costumes to perform heavy-metal or the now-iconic flares of ABBA in 1974. And have you seen Ireland’s entry this year?! However, the most memorable tales of resilience and creativity transcend spectacle.

High growth brands can cut through the noise and foster genuine engagement with authentic storytelling – flares optional! This could be achieved by sharing the stories of the people powering the brand or highlighting the impact of their products or services, but it’s crucial to convey the ‘why’ behind the ‘what’. While there is a time and place for disruptive comms, there should always be an authentic message behind every headline-grabbing stunt. Xero, a global small business platform, has used stunts to grab attention and make a quick impact but never without the backing of research, press engagement and a mission. And, in return media coverage delves deeper into the brand storytelling and their goal to improve operations for small businesses across the UK.

Go global with social media

Eurovision owes some of its growth to the role of social media. Likewise, high growth brands should ensure these channels have a place in their communications mix due to their expansive reach and ability to foster community.

Our research found that 42% of CEOs write less than one comment every two months, which does little to build an online community. Personalities are powerful in communications – just look at Eurovision influencers such as Willy Lee Adams and Emily Grace whose profiles have rocketed in recent years. Competing acts have even been sourced from social media, not least the UK’s Sam Ryder who’s electric performance secured him second place.

With a consistent and, at times, personal approach to social, scale-ups can gain insights into consumer preferences, trends, and behaviours for informed decision-making and agile storytelling.

As the worlds of technology and communications rapidly evolve, lessons from Eurovision can work in perfect harmony for high growth tech brands. Stand out with creativity, unite the crowds with purpose and let authenticity take centre stage.

So, when you’re cracking open the prosecco on Saturday night, think about what else we might be able glean from Eurovision. Let us know in the comments!