Urban List marks 10 years with a new brand strategy and plans to expand

• The new strategy is inspired by research from an Urban List report

Urban List has celebrated their tenth anniversary by revealing a new look and brand strategy, unveiling a freshly designed platform, brand position and promise — Good life. Good company. — and a commitment to extend into new markets and verticals in early 2022.

The new strategy is inspired by research from an Urban List report published mid year — The Big Still — in which 13,000 Australians and New Zealanders shared thoughts on the cultural and community shifts they believed would endure.

According to the report, 85% of consumers were drawn to a future of more meaningful experiences, ‘the good life’, choosing a more conscious and selective existence over “filtering their #bestlife for the feed”. 2 in 3 believed it was the reset we all needed, and only 1 in 10 intended to return to their pre-pandemic schedule and life.

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Urban List founder and CEO, Susannah George, says 2021 has been among the most complex in her career, balancing a milestone year for the business with the clear need to evolve given the cultural shifts the research exposed.

“It’s been an extraordinary year for us — particularly as an indie — celebrating ten years and being awarded Media Brand Of The Year. The concept of celebration while so many sectors are struggling — particularly in the context of brand — caused us to reflect and question how we evolve in light of the climate, how best to support our communities’ needs, and more broadly, what the world actually needs from the media right now”, said George.

“The last two years have triggered a hard reset in our category — time at home reducing the desire to eat, do and see things first; these trademark traits replaced with a growing desire for connection, belonging and commitment to community.”

“Our team identified this shift early — I was blown away by their intuition — seeing the need to step up and provide a sense of community to mitigate the isolation so many felt. What began as a heartfelt drive to ensure no one was alone, gradually started to expose new forms of connection — a groundswell of conversation, across our markets and channels, with a plurality of perspectives and potential befitting of our new decade.”

Head of brand experience, Sophia Wilcox, resonated with the opportunity and led the charge to redefine the Urban List brand strategy and promise, centred on the growing connections she could see.

“Our original brand promise — your best life starts here — was entirely apt for the 2010s, a decade that centred on peak optimisation and self-expression. But such an individualist, aspirational proposition seemed misplaced after experiencing a pandemic. What we truly oered our audience and partners during their toughest times was connection — to culture, to community and to their creative spirit — that’s the Urban List heartland; sitting in the intersection of these three pillars and the intersection of our audience’s values and views,” she said.

“Good life. Good company. — our new position — is a true reflection of who we are as a business, what we oer our community, and where culture is at; a nuanced and important shift that was fuelled by listening to our audience, designed to take the pressure o and enable them to show up as themselves and be”, she said.

“It’s very much an evolution, not revolution. We’ll continue to be an environment that’s recommendation rich — connecting brands with an audience actively seeking out their category.

“We currently serve an average of 30,000+ recommendations an hour and that’s not going to change. What’s different now, is that we’re embracing equilibrium. Rather than fuelling the FOMO, we’ll be collaborating with our community and with brands to help them navigate this new normal, supporting them to understand the new ideals that sit within it; and to realise the good life they seek.”

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