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Hello, I blog!

I write with no particular theme in mind, because I am random like that.

Aug
12 2011

What’s in a brand? It’s beyond just a name.

The following snippet from a random conversation got me thinking.

“That’s a nice watch. Where did you get that watch from?”

“It’s from Swatch,” says I.

“Really? Are you sure? I don’t see the word ‘Swatch’ anywhere leh!”

Swatch is a brand that’s pretty well known for their pop, funky watch designs. In fact, I personally believe they are one of the few watch brands with a clear identity. They’ve established their branding so well that any watches they create are distinctively Swatch.

Such is the beauty of good branding where brands are recognized by the identity they create or the personality they exude.

Unfortunately, it still seems that people still recognize the value of a possession primarily by the presence of a brand name on it, which is pretty sad. The unsung heroes behind a company with a good branding (usually the designers and branding managers) are not given the recognition they deserve.

This may not be representative of the general population but based on my own experience in a predominantly Asian country and surrounded by materialistic people. A Coach bag is not a Coach bag unless it has the Coach logo on it. A Louis Vuitton Bag is not a Louis Vuitton bag unless it’s emblazoned all over with the LV logo. “Don’t buy that bag, it doesn’t have the Coach logo on it. No one will know it’s a Coach bag!”

I’ve encountered the above conversation snippet more often than I can count on both hands and I can’t help but feel indignant for the designers behind the brands involved.

I understand people love to associate themselves with brands as it feels prestigious. I’ve no argument against that. We’re a status-obsessed society anyway.

But surely, there’s a better way to associate oneself with a brand other than having a fixation on the actual presence of the brand name or logo on one’s physical possessions.

At the most simple level, how about an appreciation for the design instead? Does it suit your needs? Is it nice?

What kind of personality does the brand exude? (An executive feel? A youthful, funky feel? A contemporary feel with an emphasis on simplicity?) Does the it reflect you? Some people love to associate themselves with brands that are in-line with their beliefs (i.e. philanthropy or a brand’s viewpoint and action towards issues such as ‘against animal testing’) or whose designs represent who they are.

That’s so much better than being fixated on a mere logo or name.

My name is Brenda. But, must I walk around with my name plastered on my chest for my friends to know it’s me? True proponents of a brand see beyond a name.

Just like how individuals are recognized based on a whole bunch of other characteristics such as behaviour, personality, ability, family background and looks by the people they matter to most.

Not the name on their identity card.

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5 Comments

  • 15 Aug 2011
    12:52 PM

    Vera

    I’ve never really cared about brands… and not in a “hmpf! I’m different and don’t want to act like you all”. More in a “ooh that’s a pretty bag” *stare drool reach for the price tag* “oookay… that’s a not so pretty price tag, moving on”.

    I also have a swatch watch, which I find really pretty and all… but I don’t think I’d have ever bought it myself. Kept dropping heavy hints to my parents that I wanted a nice watch and eventually got a nice watch :P

    I don’t generally associate design with a brand. I’ve seen some really bad designs with brand names too… in the end I assume a design is not necessarily closely related to a brand after all. Unless of course said designer has never worked for another company.

    I think the reason most people want things of a certain brand name is that status. As in “oooh look, she is wearing and X – dress. That means she’s filthy rich, after all said dress costs a fortune…”. :)

    • 21 Aug 2011
      11:06 PM

      brendalogy

      That’s exactly the problem, actually. People now have an unhealthy fixation on brand names to the point where they need to have the presence of the brand name/logo on whatever they buy just to show off their ‘status’, which I think is pretty sad. True appreciation for the brand comes around only when one embraces what the brand is known for – whether it’s quality, personality or design!

      I’d say you’re an example of one of those without the fixation on brand names. (; Basically, you buy what you like and are not dictated by the ‘brand name or no brand name’ mentality! :P

  • 16 Aug 2011
    2:54 AM

    Stephanie

    To me, if a brand’s design was indeed all it was made out to be, then you wouldn’t need the logo to know what brand it was. Take the iPhone for example. You don’t need to see the Apple logo on the back to know that it’s an Apple product. Same should go for handbags and clothes.

    So those people that you mentioned… I guess a lot of people think that they’re way too materialistic for their own good. I just think that they’re silly.

    • 21 Aug 2011
      11:11 PM

      brendalogy

      HI Stephanie, thanks for visiting and posting your first comment! (:

      Ditto about the materialism bit. I understand that certain brands have the status symbol attached to them which is why they have a fan base lusting after ’em. It’s the fixation on having the brand name present/clearly visible on the item which I really don’t get. (And also, happen to find ridiculous! :P)

  • 18 Aug 2011
    5:07 PM

    Sugel

    These are all examples of brands of McDonalds Nike and Apple computers Because of branding you likely have certain images that comes to mind when you think of these products.A brand is a tool that is used in the business world to describe all the information or perceptions that are connected with a product or service. Branding When you see these brands somewhere you associate them with a set of expectations or perceptions .Nike tough athletes at the height of their performance.

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