2.5 Brand value matters for all sizes of businesses
The most common objection to the argument for intrinsic brand value is, that brand-building requires marketing leverage that only big companies can afford. This is true to a certain degree, but it doesn’t rule out brand value as an important factor even for small businesses.
Brands are not necessarily about factual reality – brands are about perception. A company branded as “the best value in town” does not need to actually be the best value in town. It only needs to maintain that appearance.
All companies, in all sizes, have clients or customers that form their purchasing decisions on both tangible and intangible factors. Companies are therefore to some degree dependent on how they interact with their target audiences, in order to manage and improve the intangible aspects of their brand. Consumers see a particular brand name as a contract. A brand’s name may reduce a consumers’ sense of uncertainty, instilling a modicum of trust and thereby enhancing a sense of value.
Brand value is communicated by using consistent imagery and uniform messages, which enables the consumer to distinguish between different brands and their attributes. A customer weighs the tangible product features together with intangible aspects such as brand value (and price), to narrow down their selection to a smaller number of alternatives which they will consider for purchase. This means that a brand’s value can affect the outcome of the purchasing decision and it thereby has a value, regardless of the size and marketing resources of the company behind the brand. And this value keeps improving, if the brand is managed right.
Next: Part 5. “Corporate identity design process”