What is more inportant brand or product

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What is more inportant brand or product

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Thus started a discussion that has involved several other Corante Network bloggers. And no surprise it's hard to imagine an issue that goes more directly to the heart of what marketing is all about.

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  1. Which is more important -- the brand or the product? Posted by Renee Hopkins Callahan It was not your usual he said/she said, though it may have started that way. Branding guru Laura Ries wrote in a blog post: "Building strong brands is the key to success, in our opinion, not better products or better people." Corante Network blogger Tom Asacker's reaction: "Wow! I couldn't agree with her . . . less." Thus started a discussion that has involved several other Corante Network bloggers. And no surprise -- it's hard to imagine an issue that goes more directly to the heart of what marketing is all about. Mary Schmidt posted a take on this topic: "Lots of interesting discussion going on about how 'the brand' is more important than the product; marketing (style) trumps substance; being first is better than being best; and so on. Ah yah. Tom, Laura – I think both of you are terrific thinkers (and – ahem – brands), but this is the sort of discussion that confuses the heck out of non-marketers. They just want to know how to build and sustain a business." To which Tom replied (in the comments), "I’m one of the biggest proponents for eliminating the confusing distinctions and focusing attention and resources on what matters most. And what matters most is what the customer feels is value to him or her. Period. That is the essence of a business (a.k.a brand)!" Jennifer Rice also posted her view on the discussion: "Marketing shouldn't be forgotten. We need to find a balance. But [their] emphasis on marketing and being first unfortunately doesn't address the core need we have today of getting back to the basics and creating something worth talking about." In order to get to all of the discussion, be sure to read the comments in all of the posts I'm linking to here. And for more of Tom's views on what the point of marketing should be, be sure to read his thought-provoking Clarity: Marketing's New Task: "Until marketers understand and embrace the concept of clarity, we’ll continue to witness millions wasted on new logos, goofy ads, viral campaigns, reality TV, blogs, stadium naming, et al. And CMO’s will continue to lose their jobs (as they should), on average, every 22 months. Open your eyes marketers! Your marketing plans are a smorgasbord of
  2. expensive and misguided tactics that collectively fail to add up to a clear and compelling brand -- a reason to choose." PR Builds Brand for Complex Products Better than Ads Earned media that results from public relations efforts may be more important than advertising to brand value, especially for companies that sell feature-rich, high- involvement and complicated products such as consumer electronics, and financial services and vehicles, finds a survey by Text 100 and Context Analytics. The findings of the “Media Prominence Study,” (pdf) which calculates brand value based on Interbrand’s 2008 Best Global Brands report, show that on average 27% of brand value is tied to how often the brand name appears in the press. In industries that involve more research before purchases are made, the editorial content that results from PR can account for nearly half of brand value. For example, in the computing industry, media prominence accounted for 48% of brand value, or 16 times that of the personal care industry (4%). Similarly, media prominence in the automotive, consumer electronics and financial services industries was 23%, 20% and 19% respectively. High Involvement Brands Demand Media Prominence Findings from the study reveal that that industries that sell high involvement products - where a buyer invests time and effort in deciding what to buy - have much higher correlations between media prominence and brand value than industries selling low involvement products, which are more likely to be bought on impulse. At the other end of the spectrum, advertising expenditures are a leading indicator only for “low involvement” products, and accounted for very little brand value among “high involvement” products. Advertising accounts for nearly one quarter of brand value for low involvement products, while it accounts for less than one percent of brand value for high involvement products. “One of the goals in undertaking this study was to demonstrate that the value of PR becomes much clearer when media metrics are tied to business value rather than soft metrics that are only understood by PR professionals,” according to Nils Mork-Ulnes, VP of Context Analytics. “While this study focused on how the volume of media coverage
  3. relates to brand value, reputation in the media is often a greater predictor of brand value and business outcomes such as sales than volume alone.” In industries that exhibit a stronger link between media coverage and brand value, managers in these product categories need to pay special attention to the way the brand’s value is impacted by its communications activities, Text 100 said. About the research: This study included the 99 of the 100 brands featured in the 2008 Best Global Brands report (Thomson-Reuters, was excluded because it is a media company, and the Reuters brand name appears in an extremely large number of articles). Context Analytics and Text 100 are currently working on a second report that will assess exactly how the tone of media coverage relates to brand value. This next report will also evaluate how newer forms of media, such as consumer-generated media, relate to brand value.
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