Branding The Company

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Branding The Company

  1. 1. Branding the Company Maximize Marketing Potential Arun Kottolli
  2. 2. Corporate Brands <ul><li>IBM, Citibank, Federal Express, UPS etc. </li></ul><ul><li>These are examples of excellent Corporate Brands, company name is the Brand </li></ul><ul><li>Service firms like Accenture, EDS, Unisys, KPMG have only one main brand – their Corporate Brand </li></ul><ul><li>Brand consists of Name, symbols, Slogans and other distinguishing elements </li></ul><ul><li>To provide customers an efficient mechanism of identifying a particular service </li></ul>
  3. 3. Branding the Firm <ul><li>In Service sector, Brand impact shifts to the company brand </li></ul><ul><li>Corporate Brand can significantly influence service customers as they rely more heavily on service </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Customers are more likely to choose FedEx for sending critical documents </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Nobody got fired for buying from IBM” </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Model of Services Branding <ul><li>Principal elements, influences in service branding are: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Presented Brand </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Brand Media </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Brand Meaning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Service, Concept, Quality & Value </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Choice Behavior of customers </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Brand Elements has different levels of influence on new customers and for experienced customers </li></ul>
  5. 5. New Customers Trial Presented Brand Brand Media Service Concept Quality & Value Brand Meaning Choice Behavior
  6. 6. Experienced Customers Presented Brand Service Concept Quality & Value Brand Media Brand Meaning Choice Behavior Repeat Buy
  7. 7. Elements of Brand <ul><li>The Core of the Presented Brand is the Company’s name – accompanying words, symbols, sounds etc </li></ul><ul><li>The ‘Brand’ the company presents is not necessarily the brand the customer perceives </li></ul><ul><li>Brand Meaning is the customer’s impression and classification of the firm </li></ul><ul><ul><li>One customer may see IBM as a reliable, cutting edge service provider </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Other customer may see IBM as an expensive service firm </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Elements of Brand <ul><li>Brand Meaning is a function of brand presentation and service concept, quality and value, i.e., how well it performs the service </li></ul><ul><li>Service’s value influence customer interpretations of the presented brand </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Managers cannot shield a brand from customers’ actual brand experiences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mangers can create a service that reinforces the intended brand image </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Customers’ experience based beliefs are powerful, diminishing the effects of company controlled communication that contradict actual experience </li></ul>
  9. 9. Customer Choice Behavior <ul><li>In case of new or inexperienced customers, Brand media or company communication has a big influence on Choice Behavior (leading to a trial) </li></ul><ul><li>For experienced customers, Service Concept, Quality & Value are the major influence determining Choice Behavior </li></ul><ul><li>Excellent Branding strategy, intensive advertising cannot make-up for weak service or bad customer experience </li></ul><ul><li>Customers’ negative experience with a service can close the doors that branding helps to open </li></ul>
  10. 10. Branding & Marketing Edge <ul><li>An effective brand provides a marketing edge to service companies: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>When customers perceive competitors to be similar in service concept, quality & value </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When customers have little or no experience with competing firms and respond to the strongest presented brand </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When a firm introduces a new service category </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When a firm enters a new market </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When a firm changes its marketing strategy </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Branding & Marketing Edge <ul><li>Strong service brands help customers to understand & believe in its service </li></ul><ul><li>Strong brand help to reduce customers’ perceived monetary, social or safety risk </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Buying IBM service is risk free </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Strong brand reassures customers while purchasing intangible “black box” service </li></ul><ul><ul><li>While buying a new type of service, customers often go by Company reputation and Branding </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Name – Core of Service Brands <ul><li>The company name is the core element of the presented service brand </li></ul><ul><li>Four Elements of a strong Brand Name </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Distinctiveness : Distinguish from competitors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Relevance : Convey the benefit of the service </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Memorability : Name can be used, understood and recalled easily </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Flexibility : The name accommodates the inevitable strategies in organizations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>E.g: Dell Corp is better than Dell Computers </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Brand is More Than Words <ul><li>Brand’s effectiveness depends on integration of words, colors, symbols, and consistent application of these elements all across brand media </li></ul><ul><li>Blend all communication elements into cohesive image, and fidelity in their use – to overcome the intangible, amorphous nature of services </li></ul><ul><li>“ Develop a consistent presentation of all the visible elements of the service” </li></ul>
  14. 14. Branding & Consistency <ul><li>Consistency has a powerful influence on human behavior </li></ul><ul><li>The more consistent a company’s “appearance” is to customers, the stronger the brand identity </li></ul><ul><ul><li>E.g: McDonalds, Pizza Hut maintain a common image everywhere </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>UPS turned its fleet of 20,000+ trucks into rolling billboards also reinforced by employee uniform </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Graphic symbols reinforces the Name </li></ul><ul><ul><li>MGM, 20 th Century Fox, IBM, Dell etc </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Consistent slogans reinforce the brand name </li></ul>
  15. 15. Building a Brand <ul><li>Service quality is the foundation for services marketing and services branding </li></ul><ul><li>Company can create Brand Meaning via building a brand </li></ul><ul><li>Company can only do Image Management </li></ul><ul><li>Some guidelines for building a powerful company brand: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Start with Research </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Select the right medicine </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Build on what exists </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Internalize the Brand </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Start with Research <ul><li>Brand Development relies heavily on research, research identifies things to be done </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What is the company’s current brand meaning to customers, employees and owners? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How does the company’s brand meaning compare with that of competitors? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How well do brand elements compare with that of competitors? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What are the relative effects of service concept, quality and value on brand meaning? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What is important about the company’s service offering that could be conveyed by the brand? </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. Research Cont’d <ul><li>Services marketers should build a brand that expresses the firm’s strongest qualities, its “reason for being” in a compelling way for customers & stakeholders </li></ul><ul><li>Research involves: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Interviews with customers, executives, frontline employees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Monitor the consistency & fidelity of brand presentation across media, specific services & markets </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dynamic nature of brand influences makes research an ongoing process </li></ul></ul>
  18. 18. Select the Right Medicine <ul><li>Branding is often misused to solve operational problems – asking it to do more than it can </li></ul><ul><li>Poor service offering cannot be overcome with excellent branding – irrespective of the budget </li></ul><ul><li>If existing mediocre name, though flawed may still provide familiarity, comfort & credibility for customers – then don’t change the brand name </li></ul><ul><ul><li>E.g: Delta Airlines is an average name, but has huge customer base, goodwill & reputation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Allegheny Airlines changed its name to USAirways </li></ul></ul><ul><li>New name is a risky & Expensive medicine </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Through Research & clear strategic intent is needed to change brand name </li></ul></ul>
  19. 19. Build on What Exists <ul><li>Changing a brand name is usually a bad idea </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Huge investments needed to build & sustain brand awareness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Datsun to Nissan : A branding blunder </li></ul></ul><ul><li>If existing strategy is incompatible with brand name & old name has strong negative feeling – Change name </li></ul><ul><ul><li>E.g: Anderson consulting to Accenture </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Opt for brand continuity by double-branding, co-branding e.g: Courtyard by Marriot, IBM Global services </li></ul>
  20. 20. Internalize the Brand <ul><li>Service company employees are the most powerful medium for conveying the brand to customers </li></ul><ul><li>On-the-Job interaction converts verbal brand into verbal-action brand </li></ul><ul><li>Internalizing involves involving employees in the care & nurturing of the brand </li></ul><ul><li>Make employees understand and believe in the company’s brand </li></ul><ul><li>Employees visualize the brand for customers </li></ul>
  21. 21. Manager’s Checklist <ul><li>Are we proactive in presenting a strong company brand to our customers? </li></ul><ul><li>How does our company name rate on tests of distinctiveness, relevance, memorability, & flexibility? </li></ul><ul><li>Do we use to full advantage branding elements other than the company name? </li></ul><ul><li>Is out presented brand cohesive? </li></ul><ul><li>Do we apply our brand consistently across all media? </li></ul><ul><li>Do we use all possible media to present our brand? </li></ul>
  22. 22. Manager’s Checklist <ul><li>Do we recognize the influence of the service offering on brand meaning? </li></ul><ul><li>Do we base our branding decisions on research? </li></ul><ul><li>Are we respectful of what exists when we change our brand or add new brands? </li></ul><ul><li>Do we internalize our branding? </li></ul>

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