Week 4: Branding, PBR Takeaways

1. Branding

We hear a lot about branding and what branding means. What how does a company sustain their brand and what do they have to do? As I was growing up, I remember my cousins and I would always go to the gas station and buy the zebra gum. I don’t remember what they’re called, but the sticks of gum were colorful stripes and had zebras on them. They were also tattoo gums, so we would always have ‘tattoos’ on our tongues. I’m not sure what happened to that brand, but it is no longer available. So how did that company NOT sustain their brand?

Article Link: http://mashable.com/2009/02/12/personal-branding-102/

This article talks about to communicate your brand and how to sustain your brand. When a brand first starts out, it needs to venture out into the market and make themselves stand out. Whether this is creating a website, social media platform, going to networking conferences, etc. Do something to get the word out about your brand. Once the brand is out there, in order to maintain the brand.. you have to keep the brand updated. This can be as simple as keeping your social media platforms updated and current, or creating new promotional items, etc.

2. Marketing Plan

A marketing plan is like a road map of where you want to be for a business. A marketing plan is crucial when it comes to the start of making a product. Before you can even sell the product, a company should already have a marketing plan in place.

Article Link: http://www.forbes.com/sites/davelavinsky/2013/09/30/marketing-plan-template-exactly-what-to-include/

This Forbes articles talks about what should be included in a marketing plan. This article will come in handy when the class starts doing the group projects 🙂

Some of the takeaways I took from this article are

  • The right marketing plan includes 1) who your target customers are, 2) how you will reach them, and 3) how you will retain your customers so they repeatedly buy from you.
  • Executive Summary: This section should be done last because it summarizes the other sections of your marketing plan
  • Target Customers: This section describes the target customers; demographics, psychographics, and what the customers want out of your products.
  • Unique Selling Proposition (USP): Having a strong unique selling proposition will make you different from other competitors. Example, FedEx’s proposition is “When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight” is well-known and resonates strongly with customers who desire reliability and quick delivery.
  • Pricing & Positioning Strategy: Pricing and positioning must be aligned
  • Distribution: How will customers buy from you? Internet? Store? Think of different ways that customers can buy from you.
  • Offers: Special offers such as a free trial or BOGO

…. and a whole lot more!

3. Logos

We all know what logos are.. there’s even an Apple app that is actually all about logos. It’s a game where a logo shows up (with no wording, just the picture or symbol) and you have to guess what the company is. I’ve played that game and it’s amazing how much you know about a company just by it’s logo.

Article Link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/naz-riahi/how-important-is-a-logo_b_5450047.html

I found an interesting article as to how a logo is important to a business. Many marketing agencies and companies can say that a logo is a visual cue that shows the company’s brand, culture, behavior, and values. The author of this article believes it is the opposite. The author of this article states that companies are spending so much money on a logo, when they could instead be focusing on their product and marketing.

4. Co-Brand / Celebrity Branding

There was a good question that was brought up and got me intrigued. “Is the celebrity branding for the company or is the company branding for the celebrity?” Nowadays we see so many celebrities co-branding with another company. For example, Michael Jordan for Nike and Hanes, Tiger Woods for Nike, Aaron Rodgers for Prevea Health, etc. We all know that sometimes brands pick celebrities who are rising to the top, and when those celebrities fall.. often times so does the company.

Article Link: http://www.fastcompany.com/3004910/celebrity-branding-worth-price-tag

The article summarizes about if celebrity branding is worth the price. In the article, it states that in 2010, a research that was done concluded that celebrity ads were no more effective than non-celebrity ones. I found this interesting because if I see a celebrity or someone famous wearing a specific brand or talking about a specific brand, I want that product. One reason why I hate YouTube is because the makeup community on YouTube is so large, and they’re always talking about the newest makeup products and I find myself always buying them. The article then summarizes the rest of the steps in how to pick out the right celebrity and if it’ll be beneficial to the company and its ads.

5. Customer Lifetime Value

When starting a business, we all want to have customers and revenue coming in right? RIGHT. Otherwise, whats the point of starting a business?

Article Link: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/224153

In the article, it summarizes the fact that numbers matter when it comes to customer lifetime value. One thing that really stood out to me in the article was, “Once you know how frequently a customer buys and how much he or she spends, you will better understand how to allocate your resources in terms of customer retention programs and other services you’ll need to keep your customers — and keep them happy.” It is completely true because customers stay with a certain business because of the products you are producing or the way that you make them feel when they come in for a service.

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