BRANDS IN CONTEMPORARY WORLD

Oct 24, 2018 | 0 comments

Oct 24, 2018 | Miscellaneous | 0 comments

BRANDS HAVE BECOME A UBIQUITOUS PHENOMENON IN OUR CONTEMPORARY WORLD

Branding has virtually taken over the business world today. Every entrepreneur and business, whether old or new are first and foremost concerned with creating a brand. In the past, many businesses considered branding a trademark. A brand just covered the logo of the business but did not penetrate the intricacies of the business. Today, however, branding has taken the science of psychology and produced a new tradition that requires a business to give up traditional practices in favor of growing a powerful brand. Consumers are often thought to purchase not the product itself but the brand name. Many companies invest a large percentage of their income in creating a brand name that secures their present and future income as well.

Randall (1997) and Coomber (2002) goes further to indicate that even acquisitions of other companies and investment in particular industries are decisions driven mainly by branding. For example, in the Tata Industries based in India purchased Jaguar and Ford, they did not purchase unique materials that they did not have or even secrets to products they were unable to develop. The investment was directed at building a new brand name. The more than two-billion-dollar investment is allowed Tata to purchase a completely built and structured brand name. The cost was not based on the value of assets by Ford or even the proceeding income from products but rather on the importance and influence of the brand name. Cliffton et al (2003) Concluded that consumers today are more attracted to the branding of a company. They are sometimes willing to pay more, even undergo some inconveniences just to get access to the products of a particular company, not because of quality but because of the faith they have in the brand.

Branding is the psychology of recognition

Miletsky and Smith (2009) conducted a study where they found that majority of the consumers often shy away from anything new. Many consumers feel more secure about something they know, have experienced, or at least have heard of. Stroud (2005) in a concurring study, packaged known products and put brand names that were non-existent but kept the same elements of the product including the price. It was concluded that consumers, at least a majority of them were unwilling to try the new products. Those who did give the products low grading despite the product being the same. Both studies concluded that consumers often turn to something they recognize, even though the product may not be of good quality or even better price.

The soft drink industry has been dominated by the presence of two large companies that is, coca-cola and Pepsi cola. Despite, the introduction of many other soft drinks some of which are better tasting, healthier, and even better price, the average consumer will still market during promotion times. Getting a cut off discount on a certain amount of purchase coca-cola. Branding is vital for purposes of recognition and because recognition is what builds a business and increases sales for the business, branding more often than not takes precedence over other matters in the business. However, it is important to note that branding only leads to recognition through consistency. Branding is not a haphazard art of throwing together what the business imagines the consumer needs. It is actually psychology (the study of human behavior) and science (analysis of branding strategies that work) put together to create a formidable team that appeals to the market (LePla and Parker 1999; Bevan and Wengrow 2010).

Increased competition

In the business world today, there does not exist a business that is not facing increased growth of competition. Companies are continually fighting for the attention of the consumer. While today a company may have a large share of the market, tomorrow a new start-up could invade the same share dragging off the majority of the clientele (Davis 2009). Many companies that have stood the test of time are constantly trying to wade off competition. Another percentage has fallen into the hand of carefully structured and well-organized competition. Mathieson (2005) states that the science of benchmarking is built on the need for consumers to poverty was measured with the parameter of basic needs. Adam Smith, for instance, defined poverty as the inability to purchase brands and companies to create them. Successful brands such as Coca-Cola and General Motors have been studied widely, in an attempt to recreate their success stories. This is why branding requires to be unique and structured so that it curves out a niche for the owner. For example, the Jaguar brand is not just any other vehicle brand such as Toyota and Ford, the brand is built on provision and providing access to luxury vehicles. The consistency of Jaguar in producing these luxury vehicles aimed at ensuring consumer comfort while at the same time improving one’s social class status has created a unique niche and secured jaguar’s market share.

Hammond (2011) States that for every new start-up there are several others of similar nature currently in operation. Each business, therefore, requires creating something unique which draws consumers. Failure to do so will almost always lead to imminent failure of the business within the first year of operation. Branding, therefore, distinguishes one from the competition, giving all businesses a fighting chance.

It is the only way to communicate with consumers

For a long time, companies have sought out creative ways through which they can let consumers know what they are all about. Consumers have varying needs, and they will not come to a company unless they are aware of what the company is about, and how it will benefit them. Gobe (2001) uniquely defines branding as the process of exposing the company and business DNA to the consumer. The more a consumer gets to keno or feels they know about a company, the more they are willing to engage with them in business for a longer time. Vinjamuri (2008) continues to state that in today’s business world everything is viewed as untrustworthy especially where information is scanty. Consumers want to know more about the company before they can products they were unable to develop. The investment was directed at building a new brand name. The more than two billion-dollar investment is allowed Tata to purchase their products.

Branding allows the market to access the right information that they can rely upon when making decisions. Morgan et al (2008) give a good example of the Johnson and Johnson Company, which is branded as the leading manufacturer of baby products. The company is often associated with new mothers, pregnancy, and other material matters. Often the staff is seen in training and assisting young mothers in their new roles. The result is that a large percentage of mothers feel they can trust and rely on the company with their delicate little ones. Seldom are they willing to experiment with other companies whom they feel they know less of? Communication is a vital part and indeed a necessity for the survival of any company today. A large chunk of business is created through simple communication to and from the consumer concerning their needs and wants.

Consumers require proper representation

Holt (2004) clearly stated that a majority of the time companies fail to attract consumers through proper representation. Representation is the first step towards the relationship with the consumer. It is the first impression that consumers rely upon when making delicate choices in a highly competitive market. Verma (2010) further indicates that a majority of the time, companies are more focused on pricing, with marketing and other aspects of creating a buzz that they forget the most important representation. A brand goes far beyond the name of the product; it is the foundation upon which the representation of the company regarding staff, marketing promotions, and event management style is built upon.

Traditionally, companies often built marketing promotions, management styles, and products before building the brand name. In fact, as Baladi (2011) states branding was more often than not an accident that arose from consumer reactions to different company campaigns. Today, however, the market principles are such that consumers are no longer drawn to exciting advertisements that can be replicated and outdone by the competition, brand building has become more of a science. Before even beginning production and before making any attempt to reach the consumers, companies must engage themselves in researching and coming up with the right brand name and characteristics. Failure to do so often leads to confusion, a lack of focus, and clarity that in turn leads to consumers mistrusting the products under that brand name. Since it is the first item that consumers encounter in the company and business, much effort must be put into it to reap rewards.

Branding is vital for human resource

Recent research has shown that there is nothing more important to a business than motivated workers. When people are motivated, the company tends to grow in leaps and bounds (Mallik 2009). Keller (1998) states that a motivated workforce is a unique asset for a company in which the completion cannot duplicate. It gives the company an edge over the competition. The science of motivating workers is one that has drawn much interest from various fronts. Debates are endless on the strategies that companies can employ to attract and retain unique talent. However, there is one conclusion often drawn from the various fronts, a unique brand name is a foundation of retaining a motivated talent force. Kapferer (2008) gives an example of USAID, an international charity organization that is often located in the hard-living areas of the globe. Despite the conditions for work, the poor pay, and often difficult conditions which the staff has to endure; the organization faces little turnover and attracts millions of volunteers each year. The secret is the brand name, where people feel proud and in many cases very accomplished to work for an organization that is renowned for transforming the lives of the poor.

Large companies such as coca-cola and McDonald’s face little turnover because employees are proud to be associated with the successes of these companies. Employees like consumers often need clarity to succeed in the tasks. As the company grows and succeeds, employees are faced with increasing chances of growth and development. They are therefore more motivated to work harder, to develop unique skills, and essentially ensure the success of the company.

Conclusion

Today’s business world operates on the concept of perception. In the past, companies worked hard to outdo each other in terms of quality products and prices; today, however, consumers are more interested in what they think about the company. A company with a less quality product is most likely to outdo another higher quality product by computation simply because of perception. Building a unique brand allows the company to have the advantage of perception. Even when it comes to large, renowned company’s perception almost always makes a difference. Abrahams (2008) gives an example of a blind Coke/ Pepsi test. A group of consumers blindfolded and given the drinks to taste, almost always rate Pepsi higher in terms of taste and enjoyment. On the other hand, when the blindfold is removed, Coke always wins. Good branding has given Coke loyal customers a reason to pick consistently their products in place of others that may be better in terms of quality and price.

Managers in businesses today need to balance carefully the psychology of branding. With the right brand, expansion can be easy, market shares can be gotten, and sales are easy to come by for the company. On the other hand, a poor brand almost always spells doom for the company and success for the competition. Since brands are not easy to change, often requiring heavy investment in resources and energy, the creation of a proper brand is vital. Glynn and Woodside (2008 ) readily conclude that a brand is a company’s most vital asset and weapon; it attracts new customers, gives an edge over completion, keeps away new competitors, and protects the business during difficult business climates and economic downturns.

REFERENCES

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