Hardhat launches Australian-first challenger brand cheat codes

Independent agency Hardhat has launched a set of ‘Cheat Codes for Challenger Brands’ – a national offering of strategy products, presentations and workshops.

The cheat codes aim to provide brands that challenge category leaders with strategies, tools and techniques to drive better return on investment and accelerate growth.

“I’ve learnt first hand that the game is rigged to favour market leaders,” said Dan Monheit, CEO of Hardhat.

“The vast majority of marketing science, literature and advice only serve the number one player.

“For example, ‘buying excess share of voice’, ‘being in market for everybody all the time’ and ‘investing heavily in long term brand building’ are logical and empirically proven ways to succeed. They’re also a lot easier to do when you’re working with annual media budgets in excess of $50m.

“‘Cheat Codes for Challenger Brands’ had been developed specifically for brands competing in environments where they’re outspent by the category leader. These businesses, fighting to gain not protect market share, are hungry for ideas that work over, under and around the standard category conventions.”

The codes include ‘Buddy Up’, ‘Own the Negative’ and ‘Inside Out’

The cheat codes have been developed with Hardhat’s understanding of behavioural science, as well as thousands of hours of research and proven strategies. Hardhat has already been implementing the offering into work with existing clients through 2023, and Monheit said it is time to deliver this offering to the rest of the industry.

“In reflecting on our long history, we’ve undoubtedly done all of our best and most effective work with challenger brands,” Monheit said. “The cheat codes, which we’ll continue to develop, evolve and fine-tune, are a synthesis of everything we’ve learnt so far.”


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