8 Important characteristics of most successful brands
A brand’s strength lies in the minds of customers. Brand knowledge installed in their minds is the foundation of brand equity. Managers must seek to maximize performance in specific attributes.
The important characteristics of most successful brands are:
- Excellent delivery of desired benefits,
- Maintaining relevance,
- Perception of good value that matches customers expectations,
- Proper positioning in the consumer’s mind,
- Right balance between change and continuity,
- Brand hierarchy and portfolio,
- Coordination of marketing activities,
- Comprehensive understanding of customers,
1. Excellent delivery of desired benefits
A product is more than a simple collection of attributes. The total package a product delivers attracts customers. The total package is augmented by brand image, service and other tangible and intangible factors. For example, a coffee brand is an experience for all the five senses such as aroma of coffee beans, rich taste, product display, background music, and rich atmosphere. Excellent product package offers benefits that customers want.
2. Maintaining relevance
Successful brands change in line with the emergent environment. As the technology advances, brands change both their tangible and intangible aspects to maintain relevance of the situation. Changes occur in user image, usage imagery, personality and feelings. Strong brands seek to develop with their customers. For example, Gillette, the strongest brand changes with time to match the aspirations of the target customers.
3. Perception of good value that matches customer expectations
Most successful brands match customers’ expectations. This is possible by striking a balance between the product quality, image and features on the one hand and consumers costs and prices on the other. An accurate perception of how customers view price and value is the basis for the strong brand’s pricing.
4. Proper positioning in the consumer’s mind
Most successful brands enjoy unique positions in the market. They create product differentiation and gain an edge over their competitors. Brands like Sony and Mercedes compete in the areas of advantage to neutralize the superiority of competitors.
5. Right balance between change and continuity
Though successful brands are consistent in their marketing activities, they create changes to remain relevant with the times. At the same time, frequent changes spoil their image. So, brands have to strike a right balance between change and continuity in their marketing endeavors.
6. Brand hierarchy and portfolio
Modern firms do multi-brand businesses. Many brands will be in their portfolio. Each brand in a portfolio bears a firms connection with its name, which can add to or dilute its equity, So, a firm’s portfolio must form a definite pattern in order to strengthen equity. Conflicting brand structures dilute their equity.
7. Coordinated marketing activities
World’s top brands make use of all marketing activities in a coordinated way. Brand elements like logos, symbols, slogans, packaging and signage are coordinated to create the desired image.
8. Comprehensive understanding of customers
Brand managers should assess what customers feel and think about their brands. Brand building efforts should be based on beliefs, images and attitudes of consumers. This requires comprehensive understanding of customers.