Brand effectiveness in business [Archives:2004/780/Education]

October 11 2004

By Ms. Lakshmi Devi P K
Asst Brand Manager
Mam International Corporation
Sana'a – Yemen
[email protected]

Brand management is the application of marketing techniques to a specific product.
In marketing, a product is anything that can be offered to a market that might satisfy a want or need. However it is much more than just a physical object. It is the complete bundle of benefits or satisfactions that buyers perceive they will obtain if they purchase the product. It is the sum of all physical, psychological, symbolic, and service attributes.
A brand takes the form of a symbolic construct created by a marketer to represent a collection of information about a product or group of products. This symbolic construct typically consists of a name, identifying mark, logo, visual images or symbols, or mental concepts.
Marketers see a brand as an implied promise that the level of quality people have come to expect from a brand will continue with present and future purchases of the same product. This may increase sales by making a comparison with competing products more favorable. It may also enable the manufacturer to charge more for the product. The value of the brand is determined by the amount of profit it generates for the manufacturer. This results from a combination of increased sales and increased price.
A good brand name should:
– Be legally protectable
– Be easy to pronounce
– Be easy to remember
– Be easy to recognize
– Attract attention
– Suggest product benefits (e.g.: Easy off) or suggest usage
– Suggest the company or product image
– Distinguish the product positioning.

Positioning is the technique in which marketers try to create an image or identity for a product, brand, or company. It is the 'place' a product occupies in a given market as perceived by the target market. Positioning is something that is done in the minds of the target market. A product's position is how potential buyers see the product. Positioning is expressed relative to the position of competitors.
– Many brand managers limit themselves to setting financial objectives. They ignore strategic objectives because they feel this is the responsibility of senior management.
– Most product level or brand managers limit themselves to setting short-term objectives because their compensation packages are designed to reward short-term behavior. Short-term objectives should be seen as milestones towards long-term objectives.
– Often product level managers are not given enough information to construct strategic objectives.
– It is sometimes difficult to translate corporate level objectives into brand or product level objectives. Changes in shareholders equity are easy for a company to calculate: It is not so easy to calculate the change in shareholders equity that can be attributed to a product or category. More complex metrics like changes in the net present value of shareholders equity are even more difficult for the product manager to assess.
– In a diversified company, the objectives of some brands may conflict with those of other brands. Or worse, corporate objectives may conflict with the specific needs of your brand. This is particularly true in regard to the trade-off between stability and riskyness. Corporate objectives must be broad enough that brands with high-risk products are not constrained by objectives set with cash cows in mind.
– The brand manager also needs to know senior managements harvesting strategy, if corporate management intends to invest in brand equity and take a long term position in the market
Many brand managers set objectives that optimize the performance of their unit rather than optimize the overall corporate performance. This is particularly true where compensation is based primarily on unit performance. Managers tend to ignore potential synergies and inter-unit joint processes.
A very good example of Quality based Branded International company in Yemen is MAM International which deals with International Branded products like CLARINS – PARIS, YSL – FRANCE, Cosmopolitan, Channel, Cartier, Chopard, Logines, Bulgary, Swaroski etc which guarantees the quality of all its products. They are submitted to quality control tests at all stages of their development and all are dermatologist tested. The secret of its effectiveness also lies in its passion for discovery and its continuous investment in research.