The Universe is one of those things that begs the use of the phrase “mind blown” without irony or hyperbole. 91 billion light-years in diameter (that we can observe, the totality is likely much larger), 13.8 billion years old (give or take), filled with perhaps as many as 10 trillion galaxies, each with 100 billion or so stars. (That’s 100 octillion stars in total, but who’s counting?)
The Universe is so vast and filled with stuff that we have a hard time looking at nothing. If we point our most powerful telescopes at the parts of the sky that seem absolutely empty, after enough time we find that, in fact, that part of the sky isn’t empty at all, but is as filled with galaxies as the parts that shine brightly with stars.
But of all the unfathomable facts about the Universe, perhaps this is the most mind blowing (see?) of all: by our best estimates, everything we can see and observe — all the matter — accounts for only 15% of the total. The other 85% is something that neither emits nor absorbs light or any other electromagnetic radiation and we can’t directly detect in any way. The vast majority of the matter in the Universe is not matter at all, it’s dark matter.
Dark matter makes up the vast majority of our Universe, and yet we can’t see it at all; we can only infer its existence from its effect on what we can see. And that, dear reader wondering why you’re reading about the Universe on a site dedicated to brand strategy, brings us to brand.
There is so much sturm and drang in the business and tech worlds, and all of it focused on what we can see and directly observe. Very little attention is paid to that which we can’t see, but which has a profound (even dominant) influence on everything around us. Product, sales, customer support, growth hacking, et al — these are the matter of the business world. But brand…brand is the dark matter. More on this in the days to come.