Hannah Chima uncovers the power of brand protection in today’s society
Brand protection defines the way in which brands ensure that their image remains intact and easily distinguishable from its competitors. But is all the money placed into brand protection wasted? Do we, as consumers, place much importance on the reputation, advertising, marketing and image around a brand? Does it shape how we spend our money?
Whether consumers think much of brand protection or not, it is clearly big business for companies: MarkMonitor, a company helping brands protect their identity online, reported having to increase the price of its service by 18% because of such high demand.
Think of some iconic brands, Walkers, Cadbury and Ben and Jerry’s are very well-established when it comes to sweet treats. Converse, Adidas and Nike are all big brands in the way of trainers. Companies want consumers to have a certain image of them in their minds. To be honest I don’t think it’s a coincidence that some of the big brands continue to dominate our markets.
The power of brand reputation is evidenced in the products that we buy. As an example, Cadbury demonstrates good brand reputation among consumers and its success points to some of the factors we are influenced by. Brand reputation is worth protecting – 194 years later and Cadbury is still going!
Consumers, whether consciously or not, tend to buy from companies whose values they respect. Cadbury is a long-standing brand. I have only recently become aware, but Cadbury is a holder of a Royal Warrant: if it’s good enough for the Queen, then it’s surely good enough for us as consumers . Alongside its royal approval, its long-standing presence evokes familial values in the brand. I, for one, am still very comforted by the purple wrapper and the consistent good quality chocolate that greets me every time I purchase a Cadbury bar. One of the main values that consumers look for is trust, hence the reason why Cadbury has stuck around for such a long time. People know what they’re getting and this evidently influences our spending habits.
Brand reputation is also upheld by distinguishing the goods from those of the competition in the eyes of the consumer. Cadbury are always coming up with distinctive adverts that are a topic of conversation for weeks. I’m sure you can remember the gorilla on the drums? Or the children with the overactive eyebrows? Although Cadbury has been around for years, keeping up the brand reputation like this ensures that the brand remains fixed in the consumers mind, Cadbury is, in my opinion, the go-to when thinking of chocolate, and I don’t see this changing.
Trust, consistency and uniqueness. These are all aspects that can be established and protected through careful management of a brand. Brand protection seems to be high on the agenda of companies; after all, the benefits must materialise otherwise we wouldn’t see efforts to maintain such a strong brand image.
Featured image: wikipedia