Creating a brand identity for product branding and getting brand preference into the minds of consumers requires brand positioning and brand management. This process is often referred to as "branding" in the advertising business.
Branding starts by selecting a niche for your product in the marketplace and then developing a brand that addresses the wants and needs of the people who consume the products or services in that niche market. This is called brand positioning because the strategy calls for your brand to be "positioned" among the competing brands to stand out as unique or better.
Once you have a brand identity that is unique or better than that of the competition, it is time to begin marketing that brand. Brand marketing consists of creating ads that enhance your brands image and influence brand preference. Advertising & Public Relations are the best tools for brand positioning and brand management.
Brand management and brand identity design is an ongoing process. As consumers preferences and lifestyles change, so must your brand identity. Continued research and brand management ensure that your product or service stays ahead of the curve. This brings us to the question of why people prefer one brand over another. Some people like smoking Marlboro, while others prefer Camel or Winston. Is this because they have tried all cigarette brands before they chose one for them? Research suggests otherwise.
At the Department of Psychology at the University of California, researchers gave distilled water to students. They told some students that the water was distilled, and asked them to describe its taste. Most said it had no taste of any kind. They told the other students that the water came out of the tap. Most of them said it tasted horrible, because the mere mention of tap conjured up an image of chlorine.
The reality is that different kinds of products have different images appealing to different people. Give someone a taste of Jack Daniel's and tell them it is Jack. Then give them another taste of Jack Daniel's and tell them its Old Granddad. Ask them which one they prefer? They will think that the two drinks are quite different. They are tasting brand image!
Other than the addition of television and the Internet as highly effective media, there have been few changes in advertising since its birth. Yet the mysteries about what is "good" or "bad" advertising prevail. The truth is that if your ads do not change brand preference, they are not doing their job. If they do change brand preference, people will be three times more likely to purchase your product. The point to reiterate is that simply getting someone to remember your ad will not change whether or not they buy your product.