It’s All In A Name

October 1st, 2009 by Rob Berman Leave a reply »

Branding today is a key strategy for getting customers to think of you, your product/service or your business when it is time to buy.

I recently attended a workshop on branding where the presenter flashed logos on the screen for two competitors at a time.  She asked which one you would favor.

After the vote, she asked members of the audience why they made their particular choice.  All the answers revolved around brand image and qualities associated with the brand.

Most Interesting

The presenter showed recognizable names like:

  • Coke versus Pepsi
  • Target versus Wal-Mart

Many people had experience with these brands and immediately recognized the logos. What was most interesting is that she selected well-known brands that were likely to evince a reaction.  Those brands were in the top spots in their niche.

Name brand versus house brands and generics

How would the audience have reacted if Coke was pitted against Sam’s Club Cola?  Both “brands” should be known to shoppers at Wal-Mart.  The assessment is a famous name brand versus a store brand.  I bet the answer to the question would have been different before the recession that started in 2008.

Neiman Marcus

Neiman Marcus is well known as an upscale department store.  For the December holiday gift-giving season they sell outrageous and one of a kind gifts like his and her airplanes or an in-home bowling alley.

Neiman just announced they are reducing prices and moving to less expensive goods.  How will their brand be impacted?

The Takeaway

Value or the perception of value may trump all the money spent positioning a brand especially, in tough economic times.  Product Managers and Product Marketing Managers need to heed this lesson.

Let’s hear from you:

  1. What are you doing to maintain the value and equity of your brand?
  2. Is Neiman Marcus thinking strategically or tactically to address the current economic environment?
  3. How do you fight store brands and generics when you are a well-known “premium” brand?
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