3 min readJul 21, 2022


Everyone loves the bad boy character, just think about it. From Harley Quinn in the Batman series to Gru in Despicable Me to Niklaus in The Originals and Tommy in Peaky Blinders, there is no doubt about it that there is something irresistible about these characters. No doubt, they tend to be some sort of extremists in their views, villainous and rebellious, culminating in some jaw-dropping reaction that leaves us chilled to the bone.

Yet why are we so attracted to these bad boy types?

Perhaps it’s nothing else but the fact that these characters never follow laid-down rules, they exist to disrupt the status quo, reject authority, and adhere to their own principles. We then admire their rebellious spirit because it inspires us to maybe break free of normalcy in a world where sticking as much as possible to the status quo is expected and considered normal and accepted. So like these characters, the outlaw brand retains a taste for disruptiveness and revolution.

If we were to define the Outlaw Brand, we would describe it as an entity that simply does not know how to act without breaking the rules that exist. Creative, high-spirited, and bold, they are challengers and will tear down every standardized construct to live by their own principles which are often progressive and free from order and traditional systems.

Good or bad, an outlaw stays true to who they are regardless of motive and what drives them. Possessing a strong uncompromising character and impenetrable traits, they are disruptive which makes them a strong advocate for doing the opposite of whatever other people do.

For a brand, that means DISRUPTION.

An outlaw brand is unapologetic in its approach, which means it acts irrespective of what other people might think. Hence, In spite of their unconventionality, they are envied because they do what other brands are afraid to do and what regular people imagine but are afraid to try out.

This brings us to yet another inscrutable characteristic of an outlaw brand, which is fearlessness, a true outlaw detests the repression and the oppression of their character and would do almost anything, damning the consequences to be who they are. If you have ever wondered about outlaw brands around you that remain rebellious in the face of normalcy. Take a retrospective look at brands like Doc Martens, Bitcoin, MTV, Deadmansfingers and Apple. They have changed the game and remain spearheads of fearlessness and liberation for people who like to be different and progressive.

On another note, being an outlaw brand can be quite challenging when you exist where people are set in their beliefs, and traditions, and are barely progressive. Within these parameters, in a country like Nigeria where the people are hard-wired to behave a certain way, an outlaw brand like DisruptDNA is constantly defeating stereotypes and the usual status quo. They have formed their own principles and refuse to be bound by the expectations of the society we live in. They form their own rules as they go and the brands they work with are all the better for it as they help them see a different side to who they are and what they do.

Defining the outlaw brand is no small feat, there are so many layers to being an outlaw that you might think you have gotten to the core of who they are and BOOM! more layers assail you. If you find yourself forgetting what an outlaw brand means, remember their mantra “Rules are meant to be broken.”




Disrupt DNA is a creative agency in Lagos Nigeria. We help brands find and tell the best stories. (www.disruptdna.com)