The death of the marks
Despite the predictions made years ago about the “death of the brands"These continue to be of fundamental importance in the marketing of any company. In most markets (and it is not by chance or coincidence) the products leaders in their category are those who have managed to build a strong and solid brand personality duly differentiated: Coca-Cola, Marlboro, Mercedes-Benz, Nestlè, Chanel, Mont Blanc, Parker, Nike, Benetton, Toyota, Ferrari, and many more worldwide (the same happens at the level of local markets and national brands leaders). Just by listening to these brands, the consumer recognizes that he is facing a different product than the others in the same category.
The importance of the brand increases as the markets develops and expands the work of sale to the public known as "free service" or self-service (hypermarkets, supermarkets, supermarkets, department stores, and the like). In these cases, the product must be able to impact, via the brand and the packaging, and convince the consumer, by itself and / or with the help of advertising, to take it from the shelves or gondolas.
The reality of the markets indicates that a solid and well-grounded brand in the market produces important benefits for the company; among them:
- Greater effectiveness of marketing activities and programs.
- Greater loyalty to the product.
- Possibility of establishing Prices Taller (Prices premium).
- Ease of launching new products (brand extension).
- Greater power when interacting with distribution channels.
- It can become a solid competitive advantage that is impossible to copy (although it can be imitated).
Let's see, then, the two phases that make up the Brand audit.
The first phase of the Brand audit focuses on determining if the company's brand or brands comply fully and effectively with the functions they are called to fulfill. In this order of ideas, it is accepted that all brands (names and / or expressions that identify the product) must fulfill the following functions:
Differentiate the product from the competition (it is the primary function of the brand).
- Facilitate the acquisition of the product.
- Facilitate repetitive buying.
- Facilitate product advertising.
- Facilitate the introduction of new products.
For the purposes of brand auditing, these functions should be converted into observable characteristics. In this sense, we have:
To carry out the first phase of Brand audit You can use a simple scheme like the following:
The second phase refers to evaluating the dynamic aspects of the brand as part of the company's global marketing effort and the product's interrelation with the markets served by the company and its competitors.
For these purposes, the brand is evaluated, alone or in comparison with those of its competitors more direct (which is the most convenient), in terms of the following criteria:
As additional information for the reader, it is worth noting that the value of a brand, in monetary terms, can reach very high values. Below, we show the results for 2005 of the calculation they perform BusineesWeek / Interbrand on the value in money of the most valuable brands in the world. As an example, we have limited ourselves to the top 20 brands. The values are expressed in billions (billions) of dollars.
Coca-Cola arch rival Pepsi Cola appears in position 23 with “only” US $ 12,4 billion; that is, almost five and a half times less than Coca-Cola. Real life: RJR Nabisco brands were sold at the time for $ 25,0 billion. In 1991 Borden obtained a loan from Citibank for US $ 450 million, for which he put his brands as collateral. In England and Australia, companies are authorized by law to include in their financial statements, as part of their assets, the cash value of their brands.