IxD103 – Week 10 – Minor Task
Our minor task for week 10 was to choose three brands which we respect and study how they form relationships with their customers. I decided on three brands which I believe are highly respectable and quite frankly are branding geniuses. Products are inherently soulless. And, often, there is very little that differentiates one from another in a category in terms of materials, features and functions. What is different, however, is how consumers feel about each option they are presented with – and that comes down to good emotional branding.
1)Marks and Spencers
Who doesn’t love a trip to marks and sparks. One of the major things that stood out to me when further researching the company, was their passion for humility and remaining humble. M&S is over 130 years old with almost 1500 outlets in the UK. To say they’re successful and respected is an understatement. However, they have always remained humble. This is how they keep their customers feeling valued. Some may say that their food is overpriced, however when walking through the supermarket, the experience alone, where you get great customer service, well organised and labelled shelves, even a luxurious nod in their chosen colour scheme, makes the brand worthy of it’s price. They’re completely professional. This is consistent in all of their stores. The tasteful brand remains true to their past, with an open bakery selection and loose fruit and veg. They sell their products before the customer has even seen it. They’re reliable and customers know they can trust their food, clothes and even cafe.
Coca-cola are the king of using emotional branding. One of the ways in which Coke does this is by creating a sense of belonging amongst customers, as can be seen by the “Share a Coke”, “Open Happiness” and “Taste the Feeling” emotional campaigns over recent years. Even the consistency of the coca-cola lorry advertisement at Christmas time, gives customers an emotional link. For me personally, I would never choose pepsi over a coke, not even just because of the taste, but because I feel I can rely on coke. Coke knows that consumers make buying decisions based on how they feel about a brand. In its own case, the feeling targeted is happiness.
Nike’s “Just Do It”, is simply iconic. Nike has the ability to make us feel like heroes. The rational side of Nike’s brand appeal comes from the fact that it sells good quality sportswear. That’s great, of course – but so does Adidas and Reebok and Puma. … The Nike brand emotionally connects with its customers’ inner sense of strength, determination and achievement. They’re selling more than a product; they’re selling aspiration. Nike didn’t build its loyal fan base by harping on its iconic waffle shoes. In fact, Nike’s ads rarely, if ever, mention their products at all. They show athletes, moving and using their products. This is how they stand out from the others.
What can I learn from this?
From this exercise, I knew I wanted to choose extremely successful companies in order to see how they grab the attention of not just one group of people, but everyone… Mums, dads, children, elderly people, and I found that all of these brands have successfully shown their story. They are all consistent in their branding and aim to give their customers the best possible experience, without focusing on their competition, without following the mainstream ways of advertising. All of these brands show unique, individual traits which are very inspiring for someone like me who is only starting off. Emotional branding is a very powerful tool and when demonstrated correctly will work in a brand’s favour.