Information Management and Business Review Vol. 4, No. 4, pp. 223-233, Apr 2012 (ISSN 2220-3796)
Brand Elements Lead to Brand Equity: Differentiate or Die
Mosarrat Farhana University of Dhaka, Bangladesh firstname.lastname@example.org Abstract: The aim of this paper is to discuss brand elements and to explore its contribution to brand equity based on some relevant research reviews and some examples of prominent brands where brand elements have played a significant role to reach consumer’s head and heart. Brand is a combination of name, symbol or design, which creates a distinctive identity to consumers within a crowd of choices through its different brand elements. A distinctive or unique offering as well as get-up of a brand is the primary key of survival from the immature death in competition. Differentiating approach of different brand elements always cause a high level of brand awareness and familiarity among target consumers and later on individually or collectively, brand elements work as clue to consumers to recall and recognize the brand. Proper integration of both strong and weak brand elements of a brand contribute to brand equity, which has been focused here through some literature reviews. Keywords: Brand, brand elements, brand equity, brand recall, brand recognition 1. Introduction The word ‘Brand’ has become an integral part of our daily life. We start a day with branded toothpaste and end it with several branded durable and non-durable goods and services. Whatever the product or service, when it becomes a brand, it promises a particular level of quality, trust-worthiness and distinctive position among a dizzying array of choices. We, today’s consumers, are bombarded with tyranny of choices and over communication. The bond between consumer and a strong brand mostly depends on high level of brand awareness and its positive unique association with consumer’s memory. Thus, even in case of a low involvement buying decision-making, brand awareness plays a vital role to a consumer to recall his/her preferred brand and finalize the buying decision. In modern times, brands first functioned as symbols that enabled consumers to identify and separate one producer from another, with the ability to trace one good back to the manufacturer holding it responsible for its quality (Koehn, 2001), but they are today ascribed with almost divine characteristics serving as a strategic business asset essential for firms to develop if they are to compete successfully (Aaker, 1991; Kapferer, 2004). Branding has emerged as a top management priority in the last decade due to the growing realization that brands are one of the most valuable intangible assets that firms have. For customers, brands can simplify choice, promise a particular quality level, reduce risk, and/or engender trust (Keller & Lehmann, 2006). Building a strong brand, according to the Customer-Based Brand Equity model, can be thought of in terms of a sequence of steps, in which each step is contingent upon the successful completion of the previous step; and the first step is to ensure identification of the brand with customers and an association of the brand in customers’ minds with a specific class or customer need. Achieving the right brand identity involves creating brand awareness, which initially involves linking the brand – brand name, logo, symbol and so forth – to certain associations in memory. That is, brand elements can be chosen to enhance brand awareness; facilitate the formation of strong, favorable and unique brand associations; or elicit positive brand judgments and feelings (Keller, 2001, 2003). Brand elements facilitate the process of consumer brain mapping and play a key role in building brand equity. Consumers over period are able to identify the brand through brand elements. The idea is to develop brand elements, which can properly communicate about brand and its point of difference from competing brands (“Choosing,” n.d.). The aim of this paper is to...
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