What makes the world’s most recognizable products therefore compelling?
The product itself needs to be something of quality, of course. But quality alone does not guarantee success.
The world’s best products have something else on their aspect: world-class product branding.
Product branding is an essential element to consider as part of the broader branding strategy since it gives your products a life and personality all their own.
Great product personalisation draws in customers and maintains them coming back.
Poor product branding, on the other hand, is usually confusing at best and can even become off-putting, actively hurting sales and recognition.
Let’s look together at product personalisation: what it is, and how it can benefit your business.
What Is Product Branding?
Product branding will be the application of branding strategy concepts to a specific item or product.
It’s the associating of a symbol, name, and design with a product to produce a recognizable identity for that item.
Product branding can be deeply complex , with focus groups, multiple models of designs, and so forth.
But it doesn’t have to be. It could be as simple as designing the logo and choosing a name and packaging color.
Business Branding vs . Product Branding
Product branding is a type of branding, but it differs in many key ways from general company branding.
Business branding remains static throughout the brand and should capture the entire scope of the company’s identity.
It can even hint at a company’s values.
But product branding is much more specific. It distinguishes a single product ( or a family of products, like Lay’s potato chips ) from competitor products and various other offerings from the same company.
Sometimes, product logos even distances the product in the brand that makes it.
Let’s stick with our previous example. Who else makes Lay’s potato chips?
Ultimately, it’s PepsiCo. However in what universe would you are interested ( much less eat ) Pepsi Potato chips?
Pepsi is already so strongly identified as a product brand name that it pollutes the brand name itself, in a way.
Yet PepsiCo remains a popular and recognizable brand to the degree that changing to some thing more generic ( like Funtime Snacks and Drinks ) might be a perilous move.
The answer? Product branding.
PepsiCo can make chips, hummus, granola bars and breakfast cereals all day long. However , they ought to do so under distinct item branding identities, and that’s exactly what they do.
This graphic illustrates the scope that the world’s biggest manufacturers do this.
And indeed, in some cases this came about by acquisition, not by organic product branding. But the rule remains.
Is Product Branding Worth the Investment decision?
Yes, absolutely: some level of product branding is worth the investment.
Why? Since you want to sell more item!
The purpose of product branding would be to distinguish your product from your competition.
You’re also creating or narrowing the market to exactly the people you would like to reach.
If you don’t make investments anything at all into product personalisation, you’ll end up with a sea of bland, poorly defined products.
And your sales may show it.
The real question isn’t whether product branding is worth the investment. It’s how much you should invest into product branding.
And that will depend greatly at the size of your company and the margins of your brand.
This part isn’t skyrocket science: global megacompanies spend quite a bit on product personalisation. Startups spend a lot less.
But we’ve all observed examples of brands that should’ve spent more, right? We’re talking confusing, vague product names with logos that will look amateurish.
What Makes a Strong Product Brand?
Creating a product brand isn’t difficult or even complicated.
Creating a awesome one? That’s another tale.
There are plenty of intangibles within play in the area of product personalisation , just as with branding methods as a whole.
There’s no solid reason, for example , that Amazon . com or Google works particularly well.
Those terms don’t tell you anything as to what those companies do, plus they barely even hint at anything tangible.
But we’d be fools to say that Amazon and Google are not effective brands. They most definitely are.
So there are certainly some intangibles in perform here. Still, we’ve determined several principles of strong product branding.
Implementing these will get you well on your way to creating a successful, unforgettable product brand.
1 . A powerful Product Brand Differentiates By itself from Competitors (Even Internally)
First, strong product personalisation creates differentiation.
When you see any Pepsi product ( the soda item brand family, not the particular parent company ), you know instantly that it is a Pepsi product.
Even when it’s that weird brand new Zero Sugar Mango or the failed Crystal Pepsi — you know they’re Pepsi drinks in a matter of moments.
You are not confused for a 2nd that Pepsi is a Sprite or a Coke or a ale.
This differentiation is essential with competitors. If you’re creating a sizzling hot new cola, you wouldn’t dream of a solid red may with a cursive font, right?
But it’s essential even within a single brand, too.
Take OtterBox, for example. The company’s main product area is phone cases.
Its first two popular product brands were the OtterBox Defender and the OtterBox Commuter.
We think these are both very strong product brands. The Defender is the bulky, ua-rugged case that protects phones from nearly anything.
The Commuter is a slimmer but still protective case designed mainly for ( is it possible to guess? ) commuters.
Consumers aren’t typically confused about the differences.
But from there, things fell off a bit. Later series include Symmetry, Aneu, Figura, and Lumen. You can kind of do you know what some of those are, but not one of them speak with the clarity from the original two.
The particular differentiation just isn’t since strong.
2. A Strong Product Brand (or Sub-brand) Narrows Itself to a Submarket
Let’s go deeper down the rabbit hole of Pepsi products.
Once you see Pepsi Zero Sugar, you know pretty quickly what’s going on there, too ( spoiler alert: there’s no sugar ).
At first glance, people might think this is bad.
It’ll certainly limit sales. Kids don’t want it, and neither do people who don’t like artificial sweeteners.
Actually, this is exactly what we want product branding to do for us. The branding itself shrinks the target audience down to a particular submarket.
So Pepsi Zero Sugar is actually a great product brand.
It immediately shrinks its market down to only those people who want sugar-free soft drinks that taste ( sorta ) like Pepsi.
3. A Strong Product Brand Illustrates the Product
Lastly, the best product branding gives consumers an instant notion of what’s in the packaging.
The name, the logo, and the packaging imagery all interact here.
Take Ruffles potato chips. Ruffles could be a clothing or fabric brand, however the packaging shape and the imagery on it make it clear that we’re dealing with potato chips.
And once those elements put the consumer mindset into chip territory, it’s pretty clear what Ruffles means about the chips themselves.
The catchphrase “Ruffles Have Ridges” drives out any chance of misunderstanding, too.
What Are Some Examples of Successful Product Branding?
We’ve already shown you a few examples of successful product branding in the previous section.
Here are a few more to get your creative juices flowing.
Apple: MacBook Air/Pro
Any post or article anywhere talking about great brands is going to include Apple for all the obvious reasons: they make tons of money and everyone wants their gear.
But what about product branding?
The business has had plenty of successes, however, many duds along the way as well.
- The “book” portion ( along with product design and packaging ) make it crystal clear you’re getting a laptop.
- “Air” suggests thin and lightweight ( and all of those other branding matches ).
- “Pro” suggests a professional-grade device, likely with a higher price.
- Last, “Mac” tells us it’s a Mac, not a PC.
And that’s just the words.
Product imagery, advertising slogans, and so on reinforce all the points above and create additional interest, too.
Equate: Anything and Everything
This one’s counterintuitive, but hear us out.
Equate is Walmart’s generic brand for pharmacy and health and beauty goods.
The packaging isn’t interesting. The logo design isn’t, either. Initially, you might expect it to be on a “bad product branding” list.
But take a step right back and think about the goals of the product branding.
It exists to tell consumers “This is a cheaper but reliable alternative. ”
And by using a consistent product branding approach, Walmart has certainly succeeded here.
Consumers immediately recognize Equate products, even though they don’t exactly spark joy.
The branding differentiates the products and narrows to a submarket.
Starbucks: Packaged Coffees
Star-bucks is yet another successful, instantly recognizable brand.
Its packaged coffees, sold in grocery stores, truly succeed in product branding.
Primarily, they differentiate themselves from other grocery store coffee through the association with the Starbucks brand.
Consumers know very well what they’re getting: strong ( arguably burnt? ) coffee with a frequent reputation.
Wrap Up: Achieving Good Results with Product Branding
Hopefully this article puts you well on the path to creating your own product branding — one that succeeds in its particular market or submarket.
Of course, there’s always more to learn.
For a deeper dive on branding strategies, including brand positioning and content experience as a category, you should check our recorded webinar with Mark Organ, CEO of billion-dollar company Categorynauts.
Mark will join Diego Gomes, CEO at Rock Content, to discuss a range of topics that include and expand on product branding .
The post Product Branding: How this Strategy might help your Business Grow? appeared first on Rock Content .