Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Lessons from Procter & Gamble – Branding

 All companies and executives know about branding but many are not familiar with how to use it or how it can affect the bottom line.  Over the years P&G has become a master of this and has many multi-billion dollar brands as a result.  A strong branding strategy can increase the awareness of a company’s products in such a way that establishes strong feelings and reactions and a favorable view towards the company as a whole.  Successfully out-branding your competitors is a continuous battle for the hearts and minds of your customers.  The proposition your brand strategy makes must be very compelling, attractive and unique among competitive offerings.  Done correctly, branding is that extra margin that companies achieve over generics or even store brands.


Building on the inherent values of a brand should be the core of any branding strategy.  Winning brand strategies starts with top-notch research.  Your target customer will determine your success.  Research with consumers will identify needs and then it is up to your branding to make the fit of your offerings fill those needs.  Consistency is a key here, since all aspects of the branding must fit together.

Make it your mission to get as detailed information as possible on their age, gender, income, shopping habits (online and off) and anything else of relevance you can determine. If you’re targeting a business market, these criteria will differ, depending on the industry. Understanding your target market and what they want is key to developing a winning brand.

The research will lead to the brand promise.  It states the benefit of buying and using your company’s products or services.  A great deal of time and effort at Procter & Gamble is spent on finding the right promise and making it competitive so that it stands out in its industry or category.   They know that it must be specific because specific is exponentially more memorable.

Creating a positive emotional association in your market for your product or service is key. It can create want and desire by the mere mention of your brand, product or service name. Needless to say, that’s powerful. For instance, the mere mention of Tide detergent makes buyers think of clean clothes. 

To create a brand promise that creates such emotional connections, it should be:

1. Grounded in the brand’s core values.
2. Clearly relevant and engaging to your target market.
3. Able to create some sort of positive emotional attachment beyond just being “good”.
4. Adaptable to the business climate in terms of how the basic promise is presented although the promise itself does not change.
5. Continually reinforced and consistent across advertising and marketing.

It is clear that branding can make a significant difference in the success of a brand and a company.  Without intentional effort, unintentional positioning will occur and that can spell disaster.

The Moon & Stars team have had long experience and great success over the years with branding and have developed solid procedures to help clients.  We are happy to share these with you.



John Maver
Founder and Managing Director of Moon & Stars Consulting
President Maver Management Group
(925) 648-7561
Maver Management
View John Maver's profile on LinkedIn

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