In Brands We Trust

It’s no secret that consumers are willing to pay more for “name” brands, but studies have shown that recognizable brands can literally trigger neurological reactions that produce strong patterns of activity in the part of the brain associated with positive emotions, self-identification and reward. We’re going to show you some of reasons this reaction exists and how your business can start taking advantage of brand recognition to build customer loyalty.

You’ve seen it time and time again, blind taste tests between national “name” brands and their “no name” store brand counterparts coming to the same conclusion; the “no name” store brands taste just as good or better than the national competitor. Or as Time puts it, “What you’re mostly paying for with national brands is marketing and fancy packaging.” That’s true to a certain extent, but it’s not as simple as using shiny objects and catchy jingles to attract naive consumers.

For business owners, maybe the most important question to ask is, what is it about “marketing and fancy packaging” that makes consumers gravitate to particular brands? Let’s consider some of the less sinister possibilities than this being the manipulative work of evil marketers and their “fancy” packaging.

Although conveniently summed up as just “marketing” you’re really talking about a complex symphony of campaigns that are designed to establish familiarity, explain why your product is better, build trust and create the collective personality that is your brand. When the product consistently delivers, consumers have a positive neurological reaction to that brand because like a close friend, they know exactly what they’re going to get.

So what is it about the siren song of “fancy” packaging that draws us in? Obviously unique packaging can help a product stand out in a crowded marketplace but it can also convey a message of pride that the maker of the product paid so much consideration to the way it was packaged, which could include anything from preserving quality of the contents to preserving the environment.

Maybe the most astonishing revelation in the study was that the neurological reaction was just as strong with more “vanilla” commodities like insurance brands. So don’t think that branding isn’t as important in your industry because it appears the minds of consumers don’t discriminate.

To start taking advantage of brand power in your business you want to take an honest assessment of every aspect of your current interaction with customers and how you can heighten the perception of your brand even farther. Nothing is too small and often it’s the little overlooked items that can violate the expectations customers have of a premium brand. This includes everything from your website right down to your business cards and email signature. Why print brochures off your office printer when for about the same cost you’ll spend on ink cartridges you can have a printing expert give it that extra touch of professionalism?

When your presentation and message are at a point where it’s reflective of the brand, you want to look at starting to build familiarity. The best way to do this is by getting your brand in front of as many people in your target demographic as possible, as often as you can. The two ways to measure the success of this initiative is by gauging the reach (how many people were exposed) and frequency (how often were they exposed). There are many ways outside of traditional advertising to develop your brand, strategic alignment with other brands, sponsorships and community based initiatives are just a few of the available options.

Call Kone Marketing to give your company all the tools it needs to start establishing your brand as an authority in your industry.

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