Banyan Tree Branding the Intangible

Topics: Brand management, Brand, Branding Pages: 14 (2545 words) Published: April 12, 2010
Banyan Tree Branding the Intangible


Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts had become a
leading player in the luxury resorts and spa market in
Asia. As part of its growth strategy, Banyan Tree had
launched new brands and brand extensions that
included resorts, spas, retail outlets, and even museum
shops. Now, the company had to contemplate how to
manage its brand portfolio and expand its business
while preserving the distinctive identity and strong
brand image of Banyan Tree, its flagship brand.

Case Questions

What are the main factors that contributed to
Banyan Tree’s success?
Evaluate Banyan Tree’s brand positioning and
communications strategies. Can Banyan Tree
maintain its unique positioning in an
increasingly overcrowded resorts market?
Discuss whether the brand portfolio of
Banyan Tree, Angsana, Colours of Angsana,
and Allamanda, as well as the product
portfolio of beach resorts and city hotels,
spas, galleries, and museum shops fit as a
family. What are your recommendations to
Banyan Tree for managing these brands and
products in future?

Discussion of Case Questions

1. What are the main factors that contributed to
Banyan Tree’s success?
Banyan Tree’s success might be attributed to an
overall well designed and executed external and
internal marketing program, and in particular:

Choice of target segment

Positioning and branding strategy

Product/service design and delivery

Aggressive internal marketing

Winning the support of local communities
and public interest groups

Pioneer status: first mover advantage

Pro-environmental business practices

Choice of target segment

The large price gap in the luxury resorts market
meant that middle upper class consumers must either
stretch to pay for ultra luxurious resorts such as Aman,
or settle for resorts, though luxurious, are catered to
the masses.

Ho recognized the business opportunity presented
by the gap in the resorts market: there was room for
something pricier and more exclusive that would
better cater to these middle upper class consumers,
who had better spending power than had the average
consumer in the mass market, and would be able to
afford and willing to pay for a more exclusive
premium service offering.

Moreover, as a result of today’s generally more
hectic and stressful lifestyles, many well-to-do couples
would appreciate Banyan Tree’s value proposition of a
memorable, romantic holiday experience that would
both provide relaxation and create quality time for
them to spend quiet moments together.

Positioning and branding strategy

Although Banyan Tree’s service offering was
unique when it was first launched, this would not be a
sustainable competitive advantage, as most tangible
products could be easily copied by competitors.
Establishing a strong service brand, however, would
serve to distinguish Banyan Tree from competitors
when they do jump on the bandwagon.

Positioning as a sanctuary for romance and
intimacy was well thought out, these being timeless
attributes valued by many couples.

A clear brand promise of romance and intimacy,
which the company consistently delivered, also helped
it achieve a clear and distinctive market position. That
the company consistently delivered on its promise
further reinforced what Banyan Tree stood for in the

minds of its customers, thereby building both brand
loyalty and emotional bonds.

Product/service design and delivery

The luxurious villas and distinctive native settings
provided an excellent backdrop for guests to create
memorable holiday experiences.

Service employees were warm, sincere, and
respectful; knew guests by their names; and
remembered their preferences. Such personalized
service delivery warmed guests, and helped them feel
comfortable and relaxed, contributing...
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