Is your company doing enough to promote its brand?
A brand is a “name, term, sign, symbol or design, or a combination of all intended to identify the goods and services of one seller or group of sellers and to differentiate them from those of other sellers.
Branding is not about getting the target market to choose you over the competition, but it is about getting the prospects to see you as the only one that provides a solution to their problem.
“To succeed in branding, one must understand the needs and wants of his/her customers and prospects. This can be done by integrating brand strategies through the company at every point of public contact,” Mr Jawad Jafer, Superbrands East Africa project director says.
According to him, a brand resides within the hearts and minds of customers, clients, and prospects. It is the sum total of their experiences and perceptions, some of which can be influenced while others cannot be influenced.
“Great brands have something beyond primacy of product or service, high levels of awareness, satisfaction and ubiquitous distribution. They stand for something in the minds of consumers but above all these, they have established a bond primarily emotional between themselves and consumers,” Mr Jafer says.
For example in Uganda, some of the big brands include: MTN, Nokia, Coca-Cola, Business Power and Colgate among others; this is according to a survey carried out by Superbrands recently.
Mr Jafer advises that a strong brand is invaluable as the battle for customers intensifies day by day. He says that it’s important for a company to spend time investing in researching, defining, and building a brand. After all the brand is the source of promise to the consumer and it’s also a foundational piece in marketing.
When creating a brand strategy for a product or service, it is important to perform a careful analysis to determine principal barriers that you may come in contact with. These barriers are also known as market conditions that can keep your product or service from achieving success.
Mr Alex Wanjohi, the managing director of Chartis Uganda, says branding is also a form of lifestyle, because the consumers identify with your organisation for the reason that your services also happen to be their way of life.
He says that in most cases, it’s not about the name but the relationship between the organisation and its customers. “We recently rebranded from AIG insurance to Chartis but this has not affected our business instead it has had a positive impact because of the hype it generated. Besides our customers have continued to identify with our services which have become a way of life for them,” Mr Wanjohi explains.
Mr Daniel Ekisa, the operations manager of Basic Investments Limited, a marketing consultancy firm on Kampala Road says: “By branding, we add value to our clients by providing real clarity of thinking around their target and what their go-to-market proposition needs to look like to successfully compete,” he explains.
How to come up with a branding name, Mr Ekesa says that since a brand sells a product, it’s always advisable to sit on a round table with a client and exchange ideas.