A brand is a unique and identifiable symbol, association, name or trademark which differentiates one product, company or service from any other and it’s probably the most valuable asset that a company can possess.
Unlike a cow that can be branded in seconds with a red hot iron, branding in the commercial world takes considerable time and effort to achieve, and is far more than just a name or logo. Yes, a catchy graphic and a memorable name are all part of what makes a good brand, but a brand is also a reflection of how a company is perceived by its customers and the general public.
Brands must be carefully considered, moulded and marketed to the general public, so that in time, customers come to associate certain qualities with a product or company. These can be both positive and negative, so the utmost care must be taken to protect and nurture a brand. Certain brands, for example high fashion houses, are synonymous with quantity, luxury and extravagance, yet other brands are known for producing low quality goods.
Good brands can go bad, but bad brands can change their image over time. An excellent example of a brand that has successfully managed to change public perception is the car company Skoda. Fifteen years ago, Skodas were known for being cheap, slow and generally poor quality vehicles, and were the butt of hundreds of car jokes, including classics such as:
“How do you double the value of a Skoda? – Fill the tank!” and “Why do Skodas have a rear wash wiper? – To remove the flies that crash into them!”
But Skoda, under the ownership of Volkswagen, have reinvented themselves and managed to pull off an impressive comeback, aided by an advertising campaign that made fun of their previous undesirable reputation. As a result, the Skoda brand is now known for good value and good quality cars.
If you’re looking to build up your own company image, read up on brand advice and the latest marketing news. With the rise of the web, there are now so many more methods that can be used to promote a brand, and as the web evolves, it’s important to keep up to date so you can take advantage of the latest developments. After all, when it comes to brand building, you don’t want to miss a trick.