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There is often a business case to stretch a brand into an area that it just does not fit, even when shielded by a subbrand or as an endorser. The answer can be a shadow endorser.
BMW is a shadow endorser of the MINI Cooper. A shadow endorser brand is not connected visibly to the endorsed brand, but most consumers or potential customers know about the link or can be informed about it prior to purchase. It's in the shadows. The fact that the brands are not visibly linked makes a statement about each brand. It communicates that the organization realizes that the shadow-endorsed brand represents a totally different product and market segment than other offerings connected to the endorser.
A shadow endorser can protect the endorser brand while still providing the reassurance that an endorsement provides. Every buyer of a MINI Cooper knows that it is made by BMW and will have the same quality and innovation…
June 6, 2012 • Permalink
We are not witnessing an evolutionary change in marketing communications. Rather, there is now an inflection point which requires new communication models, different people, a revised set of capabilities, new organizational structures, and different ways of partnering with agencies. Firms are recognizing this new reality and are struggling to cope with it, as evidenced in a recent BCG report on this topic, based on nearly 100 interviews with practitioners and others close to the issue.
The maturation of social media is defining the inflection point. Social media provides the power of word-of-mouth communication, involvement, credible information sources, and personal recommendations that is next to impossible to duplicate elsewhere. Pivotal to the inflection point, it has now achieved scale which means that it is an option to some and an indispensable resource to others. But social media strategies are complex, require specialized expertise, and are much more labor intensive…
February 25, 2011 • Permalink
Out of my five brand books, what precepts stand out as one of the top ten? Which are most critical “to do” tasks for someone charged with creating or managing a business? What do you need to know to excel at building a brand? Here is my top ten list:
1. Treat brands as assets. Acceptance of the concept that brands are assets and have equity really changes not only branding and marketing but also business strategy. No longer is branding a subset of marketing to be managed as a communication problem. It becomes strategic, both reflecting and enabling the business strategy. Importantly, a brand is more than image and awareness—it also includes the size, the engagement, and the loyalty level of the customer base. That means that brand strategy needs to be developed in tandem with the business strategy, both need to be clear on the target market, the value proposition, and the investment priorities over time.
2. Show the strategic pay-off of brand-building.…
November 15, 2010 • Permalink