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Approaches to Branding

One Pressing task before an entrepreneur is on how to brand his product. How to name your brand: Several options are available for an entrepreneur on decision of whether to name brand or not. Each naming methods adopted has a strategic implication to the firm value. Verma (2013) listed the approaches in their ascending degree as:

a. Brand as policy
b. Brand as company
c. Brand as icon
d. Brand as personality
e. Brand as reference, and
f. Unbranded goods.

However, a widely used approach is developed by Kotler and Keller (2013) as:

1. Individual brand name:
This is a situation where a company/product decides to use its own unique, innovative and different name, e.g Mrs. Biggs. It brands its products separately, each having its own individual names. Though, it has high development and selling cost, but does not tie its success to other brand.

2. Family brand names:
When a firm produces several products, one blanket or family name could be used to extend the product, e.g. is the Johnsons product, Cussons Products and Pearls Products. It does not incur much developmental cost. It is through family brand we get brand extension and its advantages: positive feedback and positive hallow effect, which leads to new product success. The demerits are cannibalism and brand dilution.

3. Corporate/Company Name:
An entrepreneur may decide to adopt the approach of using its registered corporate name for all its product. It followed, Dangote or Agofure company — Agofure Motors, Bread and filling station. Here, development cost is lower because it does not require research cost and enjoys quick customer recognition and acceptance, though may lead to intangible value for the firm. One attack on the parent brand would rob-off of the entire brand line.

4. Co-branding or sub-brand name:
It is a hybrid of brand. Here a firm employs two individuals, families or corporate names. E.g. Shell/NNPC Joint Venture. Many Manufacturers of durable good employ this strategy like Computer. It sometimes adopts the strategy of submerging a key component of a major brand, especially in industrial goods and installation.

5. Generic Branding:
Some products are general and generic in nature as such: does not need to be specifically branded. Under this, we adopt no — brand strategy. This entails no development and selling cost. For instance, Is there any selective name for fuel or kerosene? The simplest answer is no.