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‘Only a third of all brands follow intuitive path of a Brand Life Cycle’

14-August-2002
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‘Only a third of all brands follow intuitive path of a Brand Life Cycle’

Surprising as it may sound, this is one of the findings of Millward Brown’s brand equity research tool – Brand Dynamic that tracked over 15000 brands across 30 countries. The study clutters all brands into eight distinct categories based on two parameters – ‘equity’ of the brand and ‘presence’ in the marketplace.

The eight classifications are Olympic, Classic, Specialists, Cult, Little Tiger, Defender, Fading Star and Clean Slate. According to research, while Olympic and Classic were ‘well known, well loved’ brands like Cadburys and Kingfisher, Defenders were ‘established brands but without the competitive advantage.’ Fading Star like Punjab National Bank, the study points out, were ‘still well known and relevant’ but have lost appeal and relevance.’ With such classifications, Brand Dynamics is positioned as an aid to the growing demand from clients globally to measure and predict softer, experiential meanings that brands have come to represent.

These findings were presented at a seminar by Millward Brown and IMRB in Delhi recently as a backdrop for the launch of such tools in Indian market. Two Joint MDs of Millward Brown, UK – Sue Gardiner and Sharon Potter and IMRB’s Neerja Wable, addressed the seminar titled ‘Building successful brands and effective communications across media.’

“Today’s brands are about experience and meaning. They have values and they can offer the consumers an experience well beyond the functionality of the product and the presence of a personality. Which means that they have become more difficult to manage. This is fueling demands from the clients for measurement and predictability of such softer issues. We have been able able to link the two issues of qualitative understanding and quantitative rigor with tools like Brand Dynamics,” said Wable.

Highlighting the study, Wable said, “Nearly two thirds of the brands bucked the predictable Brand Life Cycle path. So in some cases a ‘little tiger’ became a ‘fading tar’ instead of moving up to become a Specialist or Classic brand. Implying that creating and maintaining brand equity requires constant vigilance and a system of regular measurement and monitoring,”

IMRB President Thomas Puliyel later announced that some of such systems and tools from Millward Brown repositories would be available in India by virtue of its collaboration with IMRB.

The other study ‘Making the most of your Communication Budget’ was presented by Sue Gardiner and discussed that understanding media is as important as understanding the brand and planning strategies. Gardiner shared with the audience Millward Brown’s learning’s on the characteristics of each channel and concepts like Media Multiplier. Before the presentation she had an exclusive chat with exchange4media on media research findings and its implications, excerpts of which will be available shortly. Watch this space.

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