Brand Jesus

One of my favorite bloggers has done it again. Over at ASBO Jesus, you can find this:

In our consumer society, that just about says it all. Actually, it’s probably optimistic to think that Jesus rates as highly as some of the brands in our lives. Of course, this illustration is meant to portray the irony of branding Christianity at all. Surely our whole lives (“seven whole days, not one in seven”) should be encompassed by Jesus. But we Christians don’t seem to get that right.

Not long ago, there was a marketing study. “What brand can you not live without?” was one of the leading questions. And the winner is…Apple. More people said they can’t live without Apple than any other brand. I wonder where Jesus would have fit in on the survey. As much as I love my iPod, I would have ranked a few things as more important.

Or have I got it wrong? Maybe we Christians should do a better job of branding ourselves. Maybe we need better logos, catchier slogans, and bigger marketing budgets. In a brand-centric culture, maybe we should “be all things to all people” as St. Paul said 2,000 years ago.

What do you think, dear reader? What’s your favorite brand? Where does Jesus fit in your list?

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3 Responses

  1. Peter Carey says:

    Scott, this is a very interesting post and I really appreciate you asking it. It reminds me a bit of an old Bob Dylan song, “Gotta Serve Somebody,” in which he basically asserts that we all are obedient to something, but we need to be a bit more self-critical about our obediences, or reliances….

    One of the organizations I am associated with is adopting a much more “corporate” style of marketing, and I am actually involved with the process so far. I find it interesting and fascinating, but I remain somewhat skeptical …

    As we move toward Trinity Sunday, I’ve been singing (to myself) “I bind unto myself today” … and I wonder if the Trinity could be offered as a new/old brand …

    Peace, Peter

  2. Christopher says:

    The Dylan reference gets it right about today’s consumerist society.
    I keep an eye on Googletrends; Grand Theft Auto gets more searches than Jesus. Even at Christmas, Jesus was lower on the list than Bratz.
    Although not an accurate measure of what is really going on, it is a telling hint.

    Btw Scott, is it the US or UK Office?

  3. Scott Gunn says:

    Peter, yes, this all seems like fodder for the sermon in two weeks. Matthew’s pithy summary: “No one can serve two masters.”

    Christopher, I used to watch Googletrends more. I should get back to that. I think I stopped because it’s depressing.

    I’m watching the season finale of the US office. I’m going to make my way through the complete ouvre of the UK office this summer.


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