Monday, 6 December 2010
CASE 200 - Brand names, designer cloths and fads
Brand names & designer cloths
In marketing, a brand is the symbolic embodiment of all the information connected with a product or service. A brand typically includes a name, logo, and other visual elements such as images, fonts, color schemes, or symbols. It also encompasses the set of expectations associated with a product or service which typically arise in the minds of people. Such people include employees of the brand owner, people involved with distribution, sale or supply of the product or service, and ultimately consumers.
In other contexts the term "brand" may be used where the legal term trademark is more appropriate. Kids, grown up and new parents all want to be wearing the brand names or they might feel insecure and now days a lot of them are either very cheap, stolen or fakes.
Some marketers distinguish the psychological aspect of a brand from the experiential aspect. The experiential aspect consists of the sum of all points of contact with the brand and is known as the brand experience. The psychological aspect, sometimes referred to as the brand image, is a symbolic construct created within the minds of people and consists of all the information and expectations associated with a product or service. Marketers seek to develop or align the expectations comprising the brand experience through branding, so that a brand carries the "promise" that a product or service has a certain quality or characteristic which make it special or unique. A brand image may be developed by attributing a "personality" to or associating an "image" with a product or service, whereby the personality or image is "branded" into the consciousness of consumers. A brand is therefore one of the most valuable elements in an advertising theme, as it demonstrates what the brand owner is able to offer in the marketplace. The art of creating and maintaining a brand is called brand management. You're creating the story.
A brand which is widely known in the marketplace acquires brand recognition. Where brand recognition builds up to a point where a brand enjoys a mass of positive sentiment in the marketplace, it is said to have achieved brand franchise. One goal in brand recognition is the identification of a brand without the name of the company present. Disney has been successful at branding with their particular script font (originally Walt Disney's signature, but later translated to go.com). Brand equity measures the total value of the brand to the brand owner, and reflects the extent of brand franchise. The term brand name is often used interchangeably with "brand", although it is more correctly used to specifically denote written or spoken linguistic elements of a brand. In this context a "brand name" constitutes a type of trademark, if the brand name exclusively identifies the brand owner as the commercial source of products or services. A brand owner may seek to protect proprietary rights in relation to a brand name through trademark registration.
The act of associating a product or service with a brand has become part of pop culture. Most products have some kind of brand identity, from common table salt to designer clothes. In non-commercial contexts, the marketing of entities which supply ideas or promises rather than product and services (eg. political parties or religious organizations) may also be known as "branding". Consumers may look on branding as an important value added aspect of products or services, as it often serves to denote a certain attractive quality or characteristic. From the perspective of brand owners, branded products or services also command higher prices. Where two products resemble each other, but one of the products has no associated branding (such as a generic, store-branded product), people may often select the more expensive branded product on the basis of the quality of the brand or the reputation of the brand owner. Advertising spokespersons have also become part of some brands, for example: Mr. Whipple of Charmin toilet tissue and Tony the Tiger of Kellogg's.
Brands in the field of marketing originated in the 19th century with the advent of packaged goods. Industrialization moved the production of many household items, such as soap, from local communities to centralized factories. These factories, generating mass-produced goods, needed to sell their products to a wider market, to a customer base familiar only with local goods. It quickly became apparent that a generic package of soap had difficulty competing with familiar, local products. The packaged goods manufacturers needed to convince the market that the public could place just as much trust in the non-local product. Around 1900, James Walter Thompson published a house ad explaining trademark advertising. This was an early commercial explanation of what we now know as branding. Many brands of that era, such as Uncle Ben's rice and Kellogg's breakfast cereal furnish illustrations of the problem. The manufacturers wanted their products to appear and feel as familiar as the local farmers' produce. From there, with the help of advertising, manufacturers quickly learned to associate other kinds of brand values, such as youthfulness, fun or luxury, with their products. This kickstarted the practice we now know as branding.
The future of Brand names
Let me contemplate for a minute what the logos will look like in let's say 100 years.
I think three distinct influences will shape the profession of branding and identity design.
Influence 1: Simplicity
The first aspect of branding will be simplicity. This is required because brands will increasingly become international and they will need to talk to multinational audiences who come from different cultural backgrounds. The most simple and universally understood symbols will be the most successful.
Influence 2: Chinese
The second one is the worldwide spread of Chinese characters for global brands. Within a few decades China will be the strongest economy in the world, and as such it will generate the largest brands as well. Just like English dominates the global brand environment because of the anglo-saxon economic and cultural dominance, Mandarin will be a major influence in the foreseeable future.
Influence 3: Going beyond 2D
The third force will be the increasing need for symbols that are not simply two dimensional. They will be animated and 3D. The media of the future will allow for movement and depth regardless if it's a small or big screen. We will see animated holographic branding even on packaging. I would go even further. I'm pretty sure within 10 to 50 years most brands will have an interactive branding identity that will create the ultimate brand experience for the consumer and would be close linked to you're passport, Identification, biometrics.
Real world objects and especially living things are close to us because of their predictability and interactivity. If you smash a boiled egg against a hard surface it will always make the same cracking sound, and you will always be able to peel it to get to the tasty part. Similarly, if you pet a friendly cat it will always bend it's back and purr the same way.
Brands and products of the future will recreate such unique and recognizable experiences virtually and digitally. If you think this is unreasonable think about what Oreo does today with their twist, lick, dunk campaign. Or what Snapple does with their trivia caps. These brands successfully created a unique experience around their product that goes way beyond 2D graphics. Imagine if technology will allow for much more. Envision you're in a supermarket and you grab a bottle of Hawaii Brekky pineapple juice. Suddenly, but not unexpectedly 5 holographic hula girls will pop-up to do the Brekky dance to a recognizable jingle you've known since your childhood. When you go home and open the bottle the same girls pop-out again and cheer for you while you drink up. Such experience will be so strong and bonding to your mind you will truly feel sorry for yourself when the supermarket runs out of Hawaii Brekky. I'm sure you can come up with much more involving and better ideas, but you get the point. Stretching it even further the brand messages will probably be tailored to your specific areas of interest by pulling your public FB profile. For example if you're a muslim the hula girls will wear more modest clothing to be respectful to your beliefs.
Top 10 clothing fashion brand logos