Getting naked for Satan: the importance of a good brand story

Bryce Michelmore
May 1, 2013

I had a meal recently at Naked in the Sky. It’s a rooftop restaurant attached to a street-level vodka bar in Brunswick Street called Naked for Satan.

Great name, right?

A name like that immediately engages you and makes you want to know more. Where is it? What does it mean? And what goes on there?!

In this case, the intrigue of the name is reinforced by its history. Apparently it derives from the activities of a Russian immigrant with a long name that was Australian-ised (if that’s the word) to Satan. He made moonshine vodka in the basement of a Fitzroy building which got so hot that he used to work semi-naked. And apparently the locals used to join in too.

Brand story

Great story, right?

Supposedly this all happened around 80 years ago. I don’t know if it’s true. Truth is, I don’t even really care. It’s an engaging story befitting a compelling name and so is an example of the role of narrative in branding.

And the branding does not end there. These naked Satanists really know how to work a theme. The place is full of interesting moonshine-making memorabilia and vintage nude shots that, er, flesh out the theme and strengthen the brand experience.

It makes the place memorable. It certainly inspires interest and it made me want to go there again.

Obviously the experience itself has to live up to the hype. Indeed, any successful product must deliver on its brand promise and advertised claims. But without a great narrative, how will you get anyone interested in the first place?

Even a great product can fail without the right story. This is really the essence of what is now called content marketing: making people want to know more.

Bryce Michelmore is an Account Manager at Wellmark

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