When brands go off course, it's usually not because of one circumstance that can be pinpointed. Instead, it's a slippery slope of seemingly minor decisions and inconsequential actions. A cranky reply here, an apathetic "good enough" there — all of these add up over time.
The math associated with this is where it turns unfair, because instead of adding up one by one, it functions like compound interest. Out of nowhere a major, brand-threatening problem appears, but in reality it was there all along, growing exponentially larger under an unfocused eye.
The converse is true as well: seemingly minor decisions and inconsequential actions — done well, done right — multiply quickly. The math here is the same, but this time it's what your competition calls your "lucky break."
Originally published March 2013