Posted in Brand on 13 November 2014 By David Hunt, Creative Director
Red traffic lights are not usually anything more than an irritation during my daily commute but today was a little different. While I waited, my eyes went on their inevitable wander and rather unexpectedly found an answer to what is, for brand creators, one of the questions we get asked most...
Now we all know what the value of brand is or can be, and we could give you lots of examples of the benefits and virtues of building a strong brand. But money talks, and does so in a language that most people understand and business people listen to.
So, back to the traffic lights…
I was in the queue with, on one side, a Skoda Citigo and, on the other, a Volkswagen up!
The exclamation mark seems to be important.
In case you don’t know, they are both small, efficient, 'super-mini' city cars. They both look similar, in a automotive 'spot the difference' kind of way. And, most importantly, they are both built by the same company at the same factory in Bratislava.
Other than the badge on the bonnet and the name on the boot lid, they are essentially the same car.
Commute over and in the studio, a quiet bit of googling reveals that the perky up! can be yours from £8,635 and motors on up to £13,325, while the more functionally titled Citigo starts at £8,210 but only rolls on to £10,590.
I’m starting to sound like a car salesman so let’s think about how this answers the original question.
£425 separates the cars at the bottom end of the scale. That’s a premium of more than 5% for that VW badge on the bonnet.
More interestingly, at the top end, VW can extract a whopping 25.8% (£2,735) more from their customers’ pockets than Skoda can.
Remind yourself that we’re talking about identical cars and you’ll start to see the power of investing in your brand. Now think about what those brands stand for or what they mean to you.
Then you see that consumers are willing to pay more, substantially more, for the understated, stylish and cool quirkiness of VW than the more functional, straightforwardness of Skoda.
If cars aren’t your bag then, like I said at the start, there are lots of good examples that illustrate the power of brand. So we’ll finish on an example that uses something everyone has an interest in: food.
In June, convenience store Nisa relaunched its own-brand food range based on some solid customer research and findings. What they gave consumers was three distinct tiers with stylish design and clear customer offering. The sales boost was profound.
Four months after launch, Nisa have seen a 52.6% increase in sales. Yes, the decimal place is in the right place.
Catch your breath for a second, then think about what investing in your brand could do for your business.
With the right insight and strategy coupled with great ideas and outstanding execution, it’s clear that if you do so, your business is only going to travel one way.
Definitely with an exclamation mark this time.
All information and prices correct at the time of writing.
As discussed at the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) seminar last month, culture is becoming increasingly recognised for the role it plays in generating sustainable growth.
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