Choosing Brand Elements to Build Brand Equity: Options and Tactics for Brand Elements Criteria for Choosing Brand ElementsWhat embodies the "perfect brand"? Is there such a thing? As simple as some brands might appear, there was a lot of research done tocome to a consensus and be satisfied with the end result of any brand element.
Brand Element Options to Build Brand Equity • What is Pepsi? What is Coke? • Combine company goals & strategies to identify best elements • Brand elements help: – Enhance brand awareness – Enhance associations – Encourage positive emotions & feelingsThere are many branding theories and concepts discussed by Kevin Keller in Strategic Brand Management: Building, Measuring and ManagingBrand Equity. I am currently using the third edition. If you want to explore more of his work or others I will be discussing, there will be a referencesection at the end of this presentation.There are several options for brands to explore in order to build brand equity. Brand elements are implemented to help set apart one brand fromits competitor. What separates Coca-Cola from Pepsi, if we are not looking at the products themselves? What does "Coke" actually mean? Howdid they come up with Pepsi? These questions often come up with consumers weary but eager to try new products and brands for the first time.Using a combination of the goals and strategies of the company, brand elements help to enhance not only brand awareness and associationspeople make, but also encourage positive emotions and feelings about the brand. We will explore the different options for choosing these brandelements that can help foster the brands power in its respective industry.
Different Brand Elements • "Products are produced in the factory, but brands are produced in the minds of the consumer.” - Walter Landor • Different Brand Elements include: – Brand names – Logos & Symbols – Characters & Celebrity/Athlete Endorsements – Slogans – Jingles – Packaging of BrandsWalter Landor, a famous pioneer in branding and consumer research techniques that was quoted saying, "Products are produced in the factory,but brands are produced in the minds of the consumer." Regardless of what the product or service does, if there is not a strong marketing andbranding foundation, the brand and everything that is associated with it can be in critical danger (Zaichkowsky, 2010, pg. 2). We will be lookingat different brand elements that can help to build brand equity over time.We will explore brand names, URLs, Logos and symbols, characters and celebrity/athlete endorsements, slogans, jingles, and packaging ofbrands. The understanding of the meanings of these brand elements are critical to a brands overall success. It is difficult to pick one uniqueelement that embodies all of what a company is trying to portray through its products and services and it is suggested that multiple brandelements be used to help support this. Let us first look at Brand names.
Brand Names • Hardest element for a marketer to change • Naming Guidelines & Procedures: – Define objectives – Must reflect company & its values – Generate a series of names – Screen initial candidates – Study and research candidates – Select final nameKeller (2008, (pg. 144) states that a "well chosen brand name can make an appreciable contribution to the creation of brand equity. Brandnames might be the strongest element of all the brand elements in terms of association and uniqueness. Not only does the brand name haveto reflect the company and its values, but be clever enough to have a possibility for expansion and development in the future. There areseveral guidelines and procedures for the naming of a brand. This is an extremely difficult process making this element the hardest option fora marketer to change (Keller, 2008). Brand names that are simple and easy to pronounce or spell, familiar and meaningful, and different,distinctive, and unusual can improve brand awareness. Specific procedures need to be taken to move forward in the process. By definingobjectives, generate a series of names, screen initial candidates, study and research them, and then the selection of the final name is oftenthe process a company takes to come up with a brand name.Next we will explore some good examples and some not so good examples of brand names.
Brand Names & Examples • Establish presence on the Internet – Register appropriate URL/domain name – Be aware & avoid copyright infringement • Nike – “Just Do It” – Name originating from Greek goddess of Victory • Apple – “Think Different” – Sued in 1989 for trademark violations Other examples: Ford, McDonald’s, Starbucks, MasterCard, Sony, Anheuser-BuschLaunching a marketing campaign and the development of a brand name should be synonymous with the brand name, but with emergingtechnologies and the broad spectrum of the Internet, it is not that easy. Recently, choosing a URL (Uniform Resource Locators) or better knownto us as domain names, has proven to be extremely difficult for companies to come up with unique names that have not already been registered.Companies also must be careful of copyright infringement and violations of trademarked words. Here we show examples of some strong brandnames, like Apple and Nike.A strong brand name now, Apple is viewed as something that is rich in nutrients and flavor that can be translated universally. The apple is alsolooked at as a symbol of love and forbidden temptations in Greek Mythology. It has proven to work well for their company in a global scale.Despite this, Apple has had its own fair shares of hiccups when developing its brand. Apple Records, the Beatles record company, sued AppleComputer, Inc., over trademark violations in 1989 (Rivkin, 2011). Nike, its literal meaning originating from the Greek goddess of Victory (Nike,Inc. 2012) has worked well with its simplistic name, ease of use and representation of the company’s original mission statement.Next we will look at Logos & Symbols.
Logos & Symbols • Easily recognizable, simple, valuable • Logos – corporate names – Trademarks – Creative abstract designs • Symbols – Non-word mark logos without text – Strong visual connection • Must have flexibility to update laterLogos and symbols are a major brand element in that they are easily recognizable, simple and a valuable way for consumers to connect with abrand. Logos can range from corporate names, trademarks, and creative abstract designs unrelated to the company or corporate name.Symbols, on the other hand, are non-word mark logos with no accompanying text (Keller, 2008, pg. 156). I think symbols are more effective asfar as brand recognition is concerned. Strong symbols represent a company where you can automatically recognize what the brand andcompany is by just a small picture. The associations help the consumer identify with the brand from a visual standpoint.A benefit of logos and symbols is the ability to update and change the design. While it is proven difficult by marketers to do this without losingthe brand loyalty of consumers due to change, updating the logo to keep up with the relevant market is necessary. This can help bring anoutdated brand into the current market and reestablish a presence for an increase in sales for its products. Let’s look at some examples oflogos; can you guess which companies they are from?
Characters & Celebrity/Athlete Endorsements • Communicates key product benefits through different channels • Characters – No intended product meaning – Can update/change easily – Can stay relevant for years & provide same effect – Reevaluate character if brand launches globally • Celebrity/Athlete Endorsements – High risk for public mistakes – Could cost company positive reputation – Popularity of partnership & high ROI valueLet us now focus our attention on characters, celebrity, and athlete endorsements. Characters have been used for decades to connectconsumers with brand awareness whether it is a fictional character or a celebrity or athlete endorsement. They can both help communicate keyproduct benefits through advertising channels (Keller, 2008). Fictional characters have both benefits and drawbacks, despite the thinking that itis less of a risk to use fictional characters than recognizable celebrities or athletes in advertising. The same could be said for celebrityendorsements. What might work well for one company, might not for another. Notorious examples include athletes like golfer Tiger Woods, andOlympic gold medalist swimmer Michael Phelps making personal mistakes in their lives and losing endorsement deals.These errors in judgment could ultimately cost the company millions of dollars in revenue by consumers who are looking for brands andcelebrities they can relate to and look up to in a positive light. A benefit to characters is that they do not necessarily have a product meaning andcan be used across several platforms and product categories (Keller, 2008). These characters as well as celebrity endorsements might not workeffectively on a global scale. Fictional characters might be perceived different in various countries because of the culturally specific intent ofsome companies (Keller, 2008). Let’s take a look at some of the most popular brand characters and products specifically endorsed by celebritiesand athletes.
Characters & Celebrity/Athlete• Some examples: Endorsements Kellogg’s Breakfast Cereal characters Olay & Carrie Underwood Michael Jordan & GatoradeNext we will look at our next brand element, slogans. Dos Equis Man
Slogans • Brands can have multiple slogans • Short phrases that communicate: – Descriptive information – Persuasive information – The understanding of brand’s intentionAnother brand element that is an option to explore for companies is a strong slogan. Keller defines these as short phrases that communicatedescriptive or persuasive information about the brand. It is used to help consumers understand the meaning of the brand’s intention andpiggyback on its logo or symbol. Creativity is key with slogans and often includes rhyming words or something specific to make a consumerremember the tag line. It is also implemented within marketing and advertising campaign.Slogans can also be interpreted in different ways and does not necessarily have a literal meaning behind it. They are used to help a consumermake up their own positive opinion on what the brand means and how it best relates to them. Slogans are also used for specific campaigns thatare only relevant seasonally or to launch a new product. A brand can have multiple slogans but must make sure that all of them are able to goback to the root brand name and core values they share.Now let’s look at designing and updating slogans as well as some examples.
Slogans • Designing Slogans – Creativity is key – Easiest brand element to change • Updating Slogans – Recognize what slogan is doing – How much enhancement is needed – Research – Retain needed/desired equities within slogan – Make changesSlogans embody user imagery and can take the brand name and build awareness (Keller, 2008). However, sometimes, these catch phrases canbe overused and become annoying to consumers, removing the once positive feelings that were associated with the brand. Slogans are theeasiest of the main brand elements to change, alter and improve. As a marketer, we are able to be flexible in how we manage them. If changesare going to be made, there are several steps that we can follow to modify a brand, if needed to rebuild equity. First, we want to recognize whatthe slogan is doing. Is it contributing to the brand awareness? Is it still relevant in today’s market?Through these channels of awareness, the company can assess if the slogan needs a simple tweak or modification or a complete makeover.Next, we want to figure out how much enhancement is needed and map out a plan to make these changes. Research might be required tosustaining relevancy while preventing the brand from losing any loyal consumers from this change. Finally, we want to retain the needed ordesired equities that are still within the slogan and figure out what changes are to be made to contribute to brand equity going forward (Keller,2008). Let’s look at some examples.
Slogans • Some examples: Built Ford Tough. Where’s The Beef? Got Milk?To accompany Slogans, lets take a look at Jingles.
Jingles • Originated during radio broadcasts • Associates brand to product with catchy tune • Large component to build brand equity “You have to listen to it and want to sing it. You become the advertiser for the brand.” - Linda Kaplan ThalerJingles were made popular during radio broadcasts before television advertising. They were catchy quick tunes that associated the brand to itsproduct. Creativity also comes into play with jingles, and can be extended or abbreviated for use in advertising. Often even though looked at assilly or cheesy, jingles are a large component to help build brand equity. They are useful in that they repeat the brand name and can be usedwell into the future as a valuable asset to brand awareness. However, they can be problematic because of its musicality. It is harder to changeor alter a jingle if it is not successful (Keller, 2008, pg. 164).Songs that are used in advertising brands can also help promote a brand. Many unknown bands become popular as can be identified as a“theme song” to a certain product associating the message of the song with the product being sold. Linda Kaplan Thaler, CEO and ChiefCreative Officer of The Kaplan Thaler group explains, “A jingle is not successful if you listen to it once and like it. You have to listen to it andwant to sing it. Essentially, you become the advertiser for the brand” (Bruno, 2010). To note, she is one of the creative minds behind the Toys ‘RUs jingle, “I Don’t Wanna Grow Up”. Let us look at some examples.
JinglesSome examples:• Mentos breathmints and chewable candy: “Mentos, the Freshmaker”: http://youtu.be/PSSxAijGNv4• Hershey’s Kit Kat chocolate bar: “”Give Me A Break”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojYcc-p1TgQ• Folgers coffee: “The Best Part of Waking Up, is Folgers in Your Cup”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ujEqAi6-VGo• Free Credit Report.com Catchy creative songs:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ujEqAi6-VGo
Brand Packaging • Overall objectives: – Identify brand message – Convey descriptive & persuasive information – Facilitate product transport & protection – Assist at-home storage – Aid in product consumptionPackaging is an important element to help build brand equity and should embody several objectives to be successful. These objectives areidentifying the brand, conveying information that is both descriptive and persuasive, facilitate the product transportation and protection, assist at-home storage, and aid in product consumption (Keller, 2008). These objectives must be tied together in a unique and distinctive way to attractthe eye of the consumers.There are many different components to what makes packaging more attractive than others. Distinguishing colors, shapes, sizes, materials,graphics, texts help foster brand recognition and let it convey or imply information to reinforce these recognitions (Keller, 2008). Thesedifferences can be a unique spin on brand equity, and provide an edge over a competitor. This is done to packages at the point of purchase toimmediately trigger a brand association. Next we will explore package innovations, designs, and changes and show some examples.
Brand Packaging • Packaging Innovations – More detailed to match marketing objectives – Must be unique and different • Packing Design – “Shelf impact” – Color plays large role • Packing Changes – Easiest of brand elements to change – Must update to stay relevant – Conduct consumer research for best choiceChanges in packaging to better fit the economy, country or specific market occurs often with global products. These innovative changes can helpboost sales, even if just temporary. The design of packages is more detailed and developed to match the marketing objectives of the product.Each of the design elements, which must be unique to remain relevant, can directly affect how a product will sell. “Shelf impact”, defined byKeller (2008) as the visual effect the package has when consumers first see it on the shelves before others around it. Keller also suggests thatthe biggest and brightest packages are not always effective in this situation.Color plays a large role in package design, its innovations and its changes. Packaging with certain colors suggests different levels of consumerperception (Keller, 2008). This brand element, despite being potentially costly if major changes are made on a global scale, is easier to changethan other elements would be.
Brand Packaging • Some examples: Heinken Beer - Unique Green Bottle Tiffany & Co. signature blue box with white ribbon Noté headphonesTrial and error for certain limited edition products like flavors or sponsored advertising products will not eradicate a brand if it does notresonate well with consumers. The most common reason for package changes is to update the older package to make it moreappealing and less outdated in today’s market and to compete with other brands that might have a newer design. With all of thesechanges, consumer research is done to test a company’s theories on product changes, they do not want to steer too far away fromwhat makes the product successful but simply tie in the attractiveness of the brand to give it the most impact. Let us look at some
Closing Remarks • Choose different brand elements that work for YOU! • Set goals FIRST! • Keep a mindset to build brand equity! • All elements should be flexible & adaptable! • Continue educating yourself & always ask questions! • Good luck!Choosing what brand element works best for you or your company is a challenging task. You can use one or all of the elements to helppromote your brand to consumers. It is important to research all aspects of your company and how you want to be portrayed to others.Setting goals for your company first will help in the developmental stages of creating a unique brand. Make sure that all of these elementscan tie back to one instrumental thing: building brand equity.Keller (2008) reminds us that the quest to bring awareness and positive imagery to the consumers can be daunting, but if there iscohesiveness with each of the elements and they support one another, brand identity can be achieved. In addition, these elements should allbe flexible and adaptable enough to stay relevant over time. Thank you for the opportunity to share some of Keller’s advanced brandingconcepts with you. Please feel free to ask any questions about what we have discussed today and best of luck in your future careers!
References• Bruno, K. (2010). Best-Ever advertising jingles. Forbes.com Retrieved from: http://www.forbes.com/2010/06/30/advertising-jingles-coca-cola-cmo-network-jingles.h• Keller, K. L. (2008). Strategic brand management: Building, measuring and managing brand equity. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson-Prentice Hall.• DataMonitor, NIKE, Inc. (2012). NIKE, Inc. SWOT Analysis, 1-10.• Steve Rivkin (2011). How Did Apple Computer Get its Brand Name? Branding Strategy Insider. Retrieved from: http://www.brandingstrategyinsider .com/2011/11/how-did-apple-computer-get-its-brand-name.html• Zaichkowsky, J. (2010). Strategies for distinctive brands. Journal Of Brand Management, 17(8), 548-560.