The Rise of the Brat: Marketing Lessons From This Summer’s Most Rebellious Trend


Move over, “clean girl aesthetic.” This summer belongs to the unapologetic chaos of “Brat Summer,” Charli xcx’s lime-drenched anthem that’s become the soundtrack for a generation. Forget predictable pinks and quiet luxury – Brat Summer explodes onto the scene with a grungy, DIY vibe that celebrates individuality and messy fun. And brands take note: this cultural shift is a marketing goldmine.

Why is Brat Summer blowing up?

It goes beyond catchy tunes. It’s a rebellion against the overly curated online world. Charli xcx isn’t selling a flawless, filtered image – she’s promoting authenticity. Think baggy jeans, frayed tank tops, and Bic lighters, not perfectly posed selfies. This raw, unfiltered approach resonates deeply with Gen Z and millennial audiences who crave genuine connection.

Charli’s marketing strategy is as bold as the lime green that defines it. Her simple, lowercase album art is everywhere – on fan art, remixed tracks, and social media posts. Want to join in on the fun? Check out Charli’s brat generator. It’s a blank canvas for fans to express themselves, turning a marketing campaign into a collaborative movement.

brat advertising seen in London
Fans change their username to brat color and font
Fan art of a Care Bear X Brat
Fan uses 17,000 rhinestones to make brat merch
Merch with the simple lettering

What can brands learn from Brat Summer? Here’s the cheat sheet:

Simplicity is King

Don’t overcomplicate your message. Charli’s iconic cover proves that a powerful statement can come in a single color and a unique font. This doesn’t mean every experience needs to be lime green, but a splash of color can set the tone for an energetic, unconventional, memorable experience. Remember, less can be more when it comes to connecting with your audience.

Stand for Something Bigger

Be more than just a product. Brat Summer is a symbol of self-expression and individuality. Capture candid moments, encourage fan-made content, and showcase genuine interactions. Brands that champion a cause or movement will resonate more deeply with consumers. 

Embrace Individuality

Don’t dictate trends. Let your audience own the conversation. This could involve interactive art installations, customizable merch or social media campaigns encouraging user-generated content. Look at the endless remixes and personalized takes on “Brat Summer” style – that’s the power of fostering a community, not controlling it. 

Charli xcx’s Brat Summer is a masterclass in marketing for resonating with Gen Z. It’s more than a catchy song; it’s a cultural phenomenon built on authenticity, community, and a rejection of the ordinary. So, brands, are you ready to ditch the predictable and embrace the chaotic fun? Explore what Brat Summer means for your brand and watch your connection with your audience explode.

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