Magazine article Marketing

Can Your Brand Still Be a Winner in Tough Times? (Marketing Society)

Magazine article Marketing

Can Your Brand Still Be a Winner in Tough Times? (Marketing Society)

Article excerpt

Is your brand strong enough to weather the storm? Maintaining your brand requires tough choices during tough economic conditions.

The fact is, branding shouldn't stop - or even slow down -- during a slowdown. Ultimately, the basis for a consumer's choices in a recession does not differ much from how he or she decides in a period of plenty. The perceived emotional and functional promises need to be more apparent and persuasive to justify the same price premium.

To see if you know what it takes to bring your brand through the storm unscathed, take this little new year's quiz. Answer 'yes' to at least seven questions and you're headed to make it through intact. Nine or more, you'll rocket by the competition. Six or less: check your seat belt, it could be a bumpy ride in 2002.

1. Are you playing to the front row? Talking to your loyalists is still the most cost-effective and direct route to getting the greatest impact for fewer pounds.

2. Are you keeping your promises? Is your point of differentiation still really different and truly better? It is essential to stay focused on the promise that sets you apart from your competition.

3. Are you still relevant? During hard times people turn up the volume on what's critically important and relevant to their immediate needs. Are you in tune with what's relevant these days? Make sure you matter.

4. Are you still useful? Relevance is one thing. Usefulness is another. Actively assess the connection between your 'real world' utility and the value you provide. This doesn't mean abandoning your promise, but leveraging it appropriately for the times. …

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