Where we saw this happen most recently was in the Obama for president campaign. Obama is a man, who became a brand who transcended to become a movement. A movement of hope and change. This movement is what led to his success. The other candidates had brands but none with the kind of traction and emotional appeal of President Obama.
Another example of a brand becoming a movement is the Livestrong effort led by highly-respected athlete Lance Armstrong. Livestrong is the brand for Lance's foundation. As most people know, Lance successfully overcame cancer only to win the Tour de France again and again and is very passionate about the fight against cancer. His Livestrong brand apparel as sold by Nike contributes 100 percent of its profits to cancer research. This brand and this cause has grown into a movement that people connect with.
When brands become movements their success is often a sure thing assuming the brand attributes are positive and desired by consumers.