What is Brand Strategy?
The term brand strategy relates to the methods a brand will use to market its products or services to consumers. It focuses on how they present and position themselves in the market. There are several strategies a brand can use and here are some of the biggest.
This is where a brand will focus on marketing their company/brand name as a whole. They don’t focus on any specific element of their brand, services or products. Their goal is to improve brand awareness through marketing their name alone.
This is where a brand will focus on a specific element of their brand. This could range from an individual product to a service, or even a person. This form of branding moves away from overall brand marketing and narrows its focus towards a specific element.
This is where the brand markets the idea or emotion behind their brand rather than the name or product. A brand will align itself with this idea, emotion or feeling and market their association with this factor.
Brand extension is when a brand markets a sub-brand rather than the overall parent brand. Many big brands are owned by even bigger brands, but they don’t market the larger parent brand.
Not all brands or companies create their own products. The term private label refers to products that are produced for multiple brands from one creator. Private labels offer an in-house version of commonly produced products, and a brand can market this as a lower price alternative, for example.
Brand Strategy Case Studies
There are many successful branding case studies we could use to explain each element of a brand strategy. However, we believe these 7 examples help explain the power and benefits of brand strategy well.
Red Bull – Company Brand Name
Red Bull is somewhat of a powerhouse in the world of brand marketing. Their company-based brand marketing strategy is one of the most complete but does require a lot of budget. Running F1 teams and sponsoring extreme sports athletes doesn’t come cheap but it can lead to virality.
What Has Red Bull Done?
Red Bull has always known their target market and have found a way to communicate with them. Their initial brand marketing involved finding out where their target market would hang out and hand out free products: increasing brand awareness and word-of-mouth exposure.
Now, with a much larger budget, they still perform the same style of marketing. They know where their target market will be online or what sports they enjoy and position themselves there. Be it an F1 race or an 18 year old university student looking at skydiving content on YouTube.
What Can We Learn From Red Bull?
Understanding your target market will help you position your brand correctly. Their brand is so well known most will associate it name with their favourite sport before a canned energy drink.
Apple – Individual
Apple has always pushed their products before their brand name. Hosting large expos to launch a new product and advertising their latest phone before looking to raise brand awareness. The ‘Shot on Iphone’ ad campaigns are a great example of their marketing efforts pushing the quality and ability of their products.
What Have Apple Done?
Apple focuses on the consumer within its marketing efforts and aligns this with their product. Their push towards innovation is clear from their slogan ‘Think Different’. They look to expose their product strengths and do this through TV advertising and tech influencers.
What Can We Learn From Apple?
If we’re looking to market an individual part of our brand, like a product, it’s important that we first understand the benefits. By understanding the benefits we can market these and draw attention to the selling factors. Ensuring the individual element embodies the overall brand message.
Air Jordan – Brand Extension
One of the most recognisable brand extensions is Air Jordan. A sub-brand of Nike, Air Jordans have become some of the most successful and sought after shoes in the market. They currently sell somewhere around $5 billion worth of shoes each year.
What Have Air Jordan Done?
Nike aligned their product with an up and coming basketball superstar. They also moved away from the Nike brand name as, at the time, it wasn’t ‘cool’ within the basketball scene. By focusing on the brand extension, Air Jordan, they were able to market it alongside the athlete.
What Can We Learn From Air Jordan?
Brand extensions don’t need to follow the same brand message as the parent brand. They can be unique and move away from what would be expected of the parent brand, giving them freedom to push in other directions to reach a wider potential customer base.
Aldi – Private Label
Aldi is a European supermarket that has found great success with their private label range. In fact, 90% of Aldi’s products are private label and, as the majority of their products are in-house, they’re able to control price and availability. This flexibility gives them an edge over their larger supermarket competitors.
What Have Aldi Done?
Aldi have run a number of brand marketing campaigns, however, their focus on the quality of their private label stands out. The ‘I also like this one’ campaign is a great example of how they compare themselves to others in the industry. Backing it up with consumer data, they are able to stand out as just as good but less expensive.
What Can We Learn From Aldi?
If you’re a private label brand, it’s important to know your strengths and weaknesses. Perform market research to gather relevant data and market using this information. Part of the 4 Ps of marketing is ‘price’, so it’s important to consumers that the price is competitive.
Jeep – Attitude Branding
Jeep brand themselves alongside the idea of adventure. Jeep’s marketing campaigns are all focused around the idea of the car being a tool to achieve adventures. This is a great example of how a brand can align themselves with an idea and brand the idea with the product.
What Have Jeep Done Well?
Jeep have understood their target market and have in some ways built their target market around their products. They have positioned themselves through advertisement and product placements to be recognised alongside an attitude.
What Can We Learn From Jeep?
Marketing and branding doesn’t always have to be about yourself. Branding can be an idea that you and your products envelop. Marketing this idea can associate you with that idea. You are therefore no longer just Jeep, you are the adventure car.
Enhancing a Brand Strategy
Not every brand is the same and not every strategy works for every brand. It’s important to understand who you and who your customers are before you develop a brand strategy. Knowing this will give you the best chance of success when launching a new campaign.
For more help and support in creating a brand strategy for your business or company get in contact with Fellow. You can also view our brand strategy page here.