Shiv Shankar Tripathi
August 23rd, 2010
“The least of things with a meaning is worth
more in life than the greatest of things
– Carl Gustav Jung
Building a Brand: Factors to be considered
Source: David Jobber
Why Brand Positioning
As consumers, we are all influenced by the effects of a
powerful brand positioning-"brainwashed," so to
speak-to have preference for one versus another. But
today there are so many choices for consumers that
this term has a secondary derivation-"whitewashing."
The brand choices are so varied and the differentiation
so minimal in terms of product functionality that we're
faced with a sea of indiscernible offerings. This is why
it is critical for a brand to be well positioned and
Brand Positioning defined
Positioning means owning a credible and profitable
“position” in the consumer’s mind, either by getting
there first, or by adopting a position relative to
competition, or by repositioning the competition.
- Al Ries and Jack Trout in “Positioning: The
battle for your mind”
Examples: Cinni fans, Tata, Exide, Lifebuoy, Colgate.
Brand positioning: Perceptual Map
Brands can be positioned against competing brands on a
A perceptual map defines the market in terms of the way
buyers perceive key characteristics of competing products.
The basic perceptual map that buyers use maps products in
terms of their price and quality, as illustrated on the next
Successful Brand Stretch of Dove
Source: ‘Brand Stretch’ by David Taylor
3. Brand Platform: Taking up a position in
4. Brand Identity: Reflecting Brand positioning in
Descriptive: Kingfisher Airlines, IBM
Associative: Bajaj Pulsar, TVS Scooty, Outlander
Abstract: Kodak, Accenture, Lemon Mobiles
5. Brand Architecture: Organise to deliver value
Brand architecture creates value through clarifying all
levels of branding based on:
The needs and priorities of target audiences
Expressing the depth and breadth of the offering
Generating economic efficiencies
Extending and transferring brand equity between
corporate and product and sub-brands
Making brand strategy credible
Brand Architecture Structures
1. Freestanding Brand
Standalone brands, little or no connection with parents. E.g. Garnier
2. Endorsed Brand
Parent (Source) brand provides credibility, personal relevance of the
brand may not be clear. E.g. Maruti cars
Individual business units or brands operate under a strong parent, dual
communication with unique positioning by leveraging the credibility of
the source. E.g. Hyundai i10, i20, i30, SUVs like Tata Safari, Mahindra
Scorpio, Mitsubishi Outlander, Ford Fortuner.
A single brand spans a set of offerings that operate only with descriptive
offerings, continual product innovation, new releases and so on. E.g. Taj
Hotels, Kingfisher Airlines, Kerala Tourism.
6. Continuous Evaluation and Development
Take decisions regarding improving upon the POPs
(Points of Parity) and PODs (Points of Difference).
Brand extensions – Line/Category extensions
Category memberships – Loyalty Programs
Case I: Walt Disney
Few brands are better defined than Disney. The company's success is measured by
no less than a 610 percent growth in the last decade, according to its most recent
annual report. Nearly half of that growth came from new business areas, some that
bear the Disney name and some that do not. Here is a company that not only
understands its vision and meaning but clearly understands its parameters of
relevance. What is the Disney story?
Walt Disney was a visionary. And his vision for the Disney Company was not to
crank out cartoons or build theme parks, but "to make people happy." I think I
can safely say that virtually everyone in the developed nations of the world is crystal
clear about what the Disney brand stands for: imagination, wholesomeness,
fun. Whether we picture in our minds a theme park for children, adventure and
learning vacations for the whole family (Disney Institute), a movie or a co-branding
effort, the Disney promise is aligned with our expectations. Its branding decisions
Case II: Microsoft
Microsoft, a company that was started in a hotel room by a
couple of college dropouts with one compelling vision: a
computer on every desk and in every home. It may have been a
brazen idea 20 years ago, but it has guided Microsoft ever since,
giving it uncontested dominance in the desktop software market
and making Bill Gates a very rich man.
Microsoft today is hardly what we would call a simple company.
It employs more than 30,000 people and designs and sells a vast
array of software programs in 60 countries; having a net income
of more than $2 billion. But as much as it has grown, it has never
lost sight of its original vision. Everything about Microsoft-its
products, its marketing and, most important, its brand
positioning-is still driven by the idea of a computer on every desk
and in every home.
Baseline Our ground work takes you sky high
Headline: Helping another Indian chart the global skies
Brand Extension and Brand Stretching
Marketers have long recognised that strong brand
names that deliver higher sales and profits (i.e. those
that have brand equity) have the potential to work
their magic on other products.
The two options for doing this are usually called
“brand extension” and “brand stretching”.
Brand extension refers to the use of a successful brand
name to launch a new or modified product in a same
A successful brand helps a company enter new product
categories more easily.
Brand stretching refers to the use of an established
brand name for products in unrelated markets.
Brand Extension and Brand Stretching
When done successfully, brand extension can have
Distributors may perceive there is less risk with a new
product if it carries a familiar brand name. If a new
food product carries the KISSAN brand, it is likely that
customers will buy it
Customers will associate the quality of the established
brand name with the new product. They will be more
likely to trust the new product.
The new product will attract quicker customer
awareness and willingness to trial or sample the
Promotional launch costs (particularly advertising) are
likely to be substantially lower.
Companies who build their corporate names or any of
its products a successful brand never lose their original
They keep on innovating continuously so that their
brand stays relevant, desirable and consistently
provides value to the customers besides creating brand
equity for the company.
The brand becomes mature when not the company
but customers start taking ownership of the brand and
drive the company.
Batey, Mark, “Brand Meaning”, Routledge, New York.
Clifton, Rita Et al., “Brands and branding”, Economist
Taylor, David, “Brand Stretch”, John Wiley & Sons.
D’Allasandro, David F, “Brand Warfare – 10 Rules for
building a killer brand”, McGraw Hill Publications.
Knapp, Duan E, “Brand Promise”, McGraw Hill
Images Retail magazine.