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MARKETING’S BURJ KHALIFA by Atwiine Timothy

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“If you want to a good phone, you better buy an iphone.”

People are always willing to give advice when it comes to purchasing different products. But have you ever wondered what they base their advice on? It’s certainly not because they find the products very good looking, or of any better quality than the others. If you actually probed them further on why they want you to purchase an iphone, they would surely tell you, “The Apple guys always ensure they do quality work on their products.” Then you will know that their advice is not based on just the product, but the people behind the product. That’s when you will realise the importance of branding to a company.

A brand is a name, term, sign, symbol or design, or a combination of them intended to identify the goods and services of one seller or group of sellers and to differentiate them from those of other sellers. Branding therefore is the process entailed in doing so. So, the main goal of branding is not just to differentiate you from your competition, or get your target market to choose you over the competition, but rather to get your prospects to see you as the only one that provides a solution to their problem.

Corporate branding is not limited to a specific mark or name. Branding can incorporate multiple touch points. These touch points include; logo, customer service, treatment and training of employees, packaging, advertising, stationery, and quality of products and services. Any means by which the general public comes into contact with a specific brand constitutes a touch point that can affect perceptions of the corporate brand.

To have a successful brand, you must understand the needs and wants of your consumers and prospects. This can be done by integrating your brand strategies through your company at every point of public contact. When this is done properly, your brand will reside within the hearts and minds of customers, clients, and prospects. And you will surely firmly be on your way to having a successful brand.

A strong brand is invaluable to corporate companies as the battle for customers intensifies day by day. It’s important for the companies to invest in researching, defining, and building their brands because they are foundational pieces in the marketing communication of the companies and one they do not want to be without. In other words, a company is as good as its brand, and certainly as bad as its brand.

When all is done, a good brand should: Deliver the message clearly, confirm your credibility, connect your target prospects emotionally, motivate the buyer and Concretise User Loyalty. This is when company officials would be right to pat their branding experts on the back for a job well done. Though, if they have done nothing to help the in process of successful branding, they must acknowledge the work done, try to keep the branding expert with them so as to learn how to maintain the brand because it might take a long time to build a brand, but very little time to destroy it. Branding should be an activity involving all within a company’s hierarchy.

Corporate branding is however constantly evolving; Changes in stakeholder expectations are causing an increasing number of corporations to integrate marketing, communications and corporate social responsibility into it. A successful brand entails all the three components and this has seen the merger of marketing and communication as it is these two that play a central role in branding.

Society has taken onto brands more seriously now than before; people no longer care just about the product, but rather the corporation behind the product. They do not separate their opinions about the company from their opinions of that company’s products or services. Gone are the days when people assumed every toothpaste was Colgate. They now differentiate the brands and make choices basing on the companies not merely the product. Most Ugandans would rather purchase a phone from Simba Telecom than any other phone-sellers because they try the credibility of Simba Telecom. That is a result of successful branding. And of course there are other several examples of how people now care more about the company behind the product and not merely the product.

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