Monday, September 10, 2007

Differentiation Continuum - the paradox of branding

The influence of branding is moving on from the sphere of differentiable products to the seemingly commodity like shimla apples which have started arriving in truck loads in the Local market. A casual visit to the neighborhood hyper mart one can easily spot apples from other parts of the world, which also have some identification stickers put on them. The local fruit vendor has apples which have some tags on them on it, on enquiring what it meant, he gives his own explanation of branding and the premium he wants for those apples. In the context I am reminded of the demands of fenny manufactures who wanted the drink to be panted. Thus we are moving on the path of branding commodities...


I see three kinds of players in the branding business on the differentiation continuum; one-end signified by commodities and the other by the brands which represent a category. One would find very few companies at the brand-representing-category end of the spectrum, companies like Xerox, which have achieved that over the years of relentless branding being the exception. It is considered to be an ultimate achievement for a marketer if his brand starts representing the category, a view supported by the branding Guru Al Ries. But most of the companies would fall in the middle of the spectrum with products being differentiated but not sufficiently enough, and that is where most of the action in branding lies. But what strikes me as odd is that at one end we try our best to convert commodities into brands and at the other we consider it be out ultimate goal to make the brand again into a commodity which would represent the category. Maybe this is the paradox of branding, but luckily very few of the brands have been able to make the journey through the differentiation continuum.....

1 comments:

Jayant said...

The influence of branding is moving on from the sphere of differentiable products to the seemingly commodity like shimla apples which have started arriving in truck loads in the Local market. A casual visit to the neighborhood hyper mart one can easily spot apples from other parts of the world, which also have some identification stickers put on them. The local fruit vendor has apples which have some tags on them on it, on enquiring what it meant, he gives his own explanation of branding and the premium he wants for those apples. In the context I am reminded of the demands of fenny manufactures who wanted the drink to be panted. Thus we are moving on the path of branding commodities...


I see three kinds of players in the branding business on the differentiation continuum; one-end signified by commodities and the other by the brands which represent a category. One would find very few companies at the brand-representing-category end of the spectrum, companies like Xerox, which have achieved that over the years of relentless branding being the exception. It is considered to be an ultimate achievement for a marketer if his brand starts representing the category, a view supported by the branding Guru Al Ries. But most of the companies would fall in the middle of the spectrum with products being differentiated but not sufficiently enough, and that is where most of the action in branding lies. But what strikes me as odd is that at one end we try our best to convert commodities into brands and at the other we consider it be out ultimate goal to make the brand again into a commodity which would represent the category. Maybe this is the paradox of branding, but luckily very few of the brands have been able to make the journey through the differentiation continuum.....

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