The word “brand” is derived from the Old Norse (North Germanic Language) word brandr, which means “to burn”. In the past and still today, brands are the means by which owners of a livestock make a mark (by burning) on skins of their animals to identify them that is how word brand is related to the word brandr. According to American Marketing Association (AMA), brand is defined as a “name, term, sign, symbol, or design, or a combination of them, intended to spot the goods and services of one seller or group of sellers and to distinguish them from those of competition”.
To be precise, whenever a marketer creates a new name, logo or symbol for a new product; then, he or she has created a brand. Many practicing managers think that brand is more than that is defined by AMA. They say brand is something that has actually created a certain amount of awareness, reputation and prominence in the market place.
According to AMA definition of a brand, the basic to creating a brand is to be able to select a name, logo, symbol, package design, or other characteristics that identifies a product and distinguishes it from others. The dissimilar components of a brand that identify and differentiate it from other brands are called brand elements.
Strategies Adopted By Different Companies to Name a Brand:
Some companies like General Electric and Samsung use the same brand name for essentially all their products. Some manufacturers like Procter & Gamble (P&G) assign their new products individual brand names such as P&G’s Tide, Pampers & Gillette. Names of some brands are based on names of people for example Porshe Automobiles. The names of some brands are based on names of birds and animals for instance Greyhound Buses and Dove Soap. Some brand names use words with inherent product meaning like Lean Cuisine while some brand names use words suggesting important attributes or benefits such as Beautyrest Mattresses. Some brand names are scientific such as Intel Microprocessors where word “Intel” is a shortened version for name, “Integrated Electronics”.
What Is The Difference Between A Brand And Product?
A product is something that is made by a company and can be purchased by a consumer in exchange for money whereas brands are built through consumer perceptions, expectations, and experiences such as facebook (a brand that is made by consumer perceptions, expectations, and experiences). Brands are unique while products can be copied and replaced for instance Nescafé (a unique brand). Products can become obsolete but brands are timeless for example Coca-Cola (a timeless brand). Products are instantly meaningful while brands become meaningful over time for instance Google Search Engine (a brand that became meaningful over time).
In a nutshell, a product becomes a brand when it meets the need of consumers/customers by offering some value to them. A brand cannot be imitated, so it is something that is unique. Furthermore, brands are everlasting and gain importance over time.