Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Assignment 5A


Successful product branding is dependant on lots of things. If you can clearly show the message and get to know clients needs and wants you will ultimately be onto a success. I want to investigate how some brands are defeating other brands, what makes some brands more successful than others? how can we change our perceptions of perfection? i want to find out the meaning behind the advertising, the production of the products and how much toxic chemicals are released into the atmosphere each year. facts like that will shock the public and change our idea of a perfect lifestyle.

The American marketing association (AMA) identifies a brand as a ‘name, term, sign, symbol, design’, or a combination of them. Therefore good branding is achieved by understanding your target market and providing answers to their problems. You must not only deliver the message well but connect and motivate the client in a way in which they want to use your work again, you need to prove your loyalty to the project. You must also take the time to research and produce the message behind your brand. Why? Who is it aimed at? You must ask yourself these questions while in the process of creating a brand image.

Brand image sells your product. The product sells your brand. Good quality and aesthetics lead to your brand becoming a success. Word of mouth is spread from person to person like an air born infection if a new product comes out which is about to revolutionise how we live our lives on a daily basis. Ground breaking technology seems to come forward, gradually out-doing its competition. It’s crazy; we live in a throw-away society. The “stuff” we buy turns into junk within a matter of months. New “stuff” comes out, promising to be better, do more “stuff” and make you look good, feel good. Landfills are piling high full of our so called revolutionary technology.
Recently I saw the film ‘valentine’s day’ and it made me think of the pressure we are subconsciously put through. The amount of brand power involved in the film industry is immense. Everything and anything is advertised through the film industry and celebrities. In this film there happened to be a tone of celebs, they all seem flawless. You buy into this persona, they are acting. People see on these films how good the actors/ celebrities look and buy into it, they want to create this perfection for themselves. It’s a lot of pressure to be under, especially for young teens. Magazines are a prime example, flicking through any magazine but especially things like vogue you can see a tone of adverts calling out to you. They are crammed full of pressure brought forward by the branding and advertising to make you want to buy their products. I like to call it the “coolness factor”.

As i am focusing on brands it would be an obvious start to pick a couple of brands that that popular and work well, appealing to different categories of people and contrasting them with brands that have failed. These failed/ failing brands may have been regenerated, like Marks & spencers. They may have gone out of business. But that is what i would start of by doing. Researching different brands and where they stand in the current market. I would look at profits and comprise a series of line graphs to show the increase of sales/ decreases over a certain time period. From there i would then decide if that brand is a successful one or a negative one based on the facts on paper. This would be a good starting point because after all my research is conducted i can compare the “facts on paper” with the more “psychological experiments.”

Why are some brands more successful than others? To answer this I need to really think outside the box. I will need to use lots of different social experiments to help me come up with the answer. I don’t want to focus on one type of product i want to focus on many different ones. Clothes, technology, kitchens! You name it. One of the brands i really like just now is innocent smoothies! I particularly even like smoothies. Its the simplistic packaging and easy message that has gained the respect from the consumer. Products like this deserve to succeed, that use simple messages and that are good honest products.

Through thinking of branding in a supermarket i would randomly select a few different well known products from well known companies and then also purchase the same cheaper supermarket equivalent. I will then go and ask a random selection of people to choose which product they would go for if they would go into a shop. Then using a quick set of questions I would then ask about the packaging, design, ease of use, also ask things like which one looks simpler to cook and which looks nicer. Why did people choose that? What kind of people were they? Using observation skills, what wear their physical appearance? Were they healthy looking? Did they have children? After the interviewing process did I notice a visible difference in results? Did I expect the results to be that way?

Relating to the short video we watched in Design Studies based on young teens who were obsessed with labels and brands. I also decided to focus on clothing. Using different styles and focusing on the latest trends i would do the same experiment as the supermarket food but instead buy clothes from high end retail store and low end retail store. I would then see if different age groups act differently to branding. Would children care more than their parents? I found this quite interesting after watching that cringe worthy programme! Was I as bad when I was growing up? Yes i was obsessed with ‘Tammy Girl’ and ‘Claire’s accessories’ but i don’t think it was as bad for me growing up as it is now. Kids get physically and mentally bullied by not having the latest trends or by wearing old trainers. I decided i would test this in my proposal. I want to find out why, and if we can convince people to change their opinions on branding.

As i have decided to repeat the test again i can then compare the results i gained. This will make the results more accurate and if it all goes wrong i have a plan B. If the results fail completely i would then re-do my experiment and use banners and observe how many people went u and viewed the banners. I would have one for say a high end retailer such as topshop and a less desirable one such as Primark. I would have information on the posters about the hottest new trends in store so if it was topshop it might be the ‘new’ boyfriend blazer trend, and in Primark it could be simple printed cotton tops? I would want to make it a fair test by having the same amount of information on each. After doing this, I would place them in certain locations, around Dundee/ Scotland? I would then choose a safe distance and tally the amount of people that stopped and viewed each poster. I would observe the type of people, are they fashionable? What body image do they portray? After doing this i would count the results and see if i could count as people with bags from the two shops and almost observe how many people would choose topshop over Primark and vice versa.

In conclusion i propose to to answer the questions relating to brand power. I plan to observe, interview, test and research my line of thought in an attempt to change public perception of branding itself. i hope that as a human beings we can look past packaging and see what is beneath the exterior of the purchase. Are the two contrasting companies products made in exactly the same companies? with exactly the same materials? what makes something more expensive. why is topshop 10x more expensive than shops such as primark? these are the things i would like i look into further. I want to test the public and show them what is under the sexy branding surface. I want to dig deeper and uncover the truth of the products.
Lake Laura, American marketing association (AMA)

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