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Marketing & Sales Roundtable The Role of Branding in Technology-Based Companies March 2005:

Marketing & Sales Roundtable The Role of Branding in Technology-Based Companies March 2005

What is a Brand?:

2 What is a Brand? “A name, term, sign, symbol or design, or a combination of these that is intended to identify the goods and services of one business or group of businesses and to differentiate them from those of competitors” “A mixture of tangible and intangible attributes symbolized by a product or company, which is properly managed, creates influence and generates value” “Augmenting core product and value proposition with unique values that set it apart from competitors”

More Branding Definitions:

3 More Branding Definitions Brand Assets Awareness Loyalty Perceived quality of experience Brand Equity –the value of a brand. Brand equity is based on the strength of the brand assets. Brand equity also includes other assets such as patents, trademarks and channel relationships. Brand Image –the set of beliefs that customers hold about a particular brand. It is important to develop these carefully since a negative brand image can be very difficult to dispel. Brand Extension –the use of successful brand name to launch a new or modified product or service in a new market.

A Brand Is……:

4 A Brand Is …… The sum total of a customer’s (the market’s) experience with a product or company over time

Why is a Brand Worth Building?:

5 Why is a Brand Worth Building? Brand awareness = higher valuations Brand equity = strategic asset Stabilizing influence for market participants, especially customers Increasingly competitive environment (technology and product –proliferation) Product life cycle compression ‘Consumer’ decision–making influences Provides pre-emptive protection in highly competitive markets Enables pricing premiums, better profit margins Helps company enter new product categories and/or markets more easily Lower risk factor Promotional costs Facilitates customer loyalty Builds employee, partner pride in company/product A strategic, sustainable competitive advantage

Why is a Brand Worth Building? (con’t):

6 Strong brands establish a long-lasting place in short-lived markets Value Time Brand Lifecycle Product Why is a Brand Worth Building? (con ’ t)

PowerPoint Presentation:

7 Positioning and Branding Positioning Strategy Statement Technology and Total Product Roadmap Partnerships Total Product Assets (Functional) Programs Business Model Market Entry Customer Segment Critical Need and Total Product Requirements Company Total Product Solution’s Potential Differentiators Competitors’ Total Product Solutions’ Potential Differentiators Company Differentiator Barriers to Adoption Market Drivers Customer/ End-User Problem(s) Definition Mission Statement Applications Technology Enablers Customer Segments Critical Needs Company Product/ Service Match Market Entry Customer Segment Roadmap and Market Segment Leadership Roadmap Market Segment Product/Market Category Market Vision Market/Customer Segmentation Competitive Differentiation Strategy Evidence POSITIONING STRATEGY BRANDING STRATEGY

When Does Positioning Strategy Convert to a Brand?:

8 When Does Positioning Strategy Convert to a Brand? When the positioning strategy evidence comes into contact with the customer And, the customer agrees with it, Time and time again

PowerPoint Presentation:

9 Branding Elements Values/Attributes Personality Voice Brand architecture Image/Identity system Strategy Evidence Positioning Elements Market vision Market and customer segment(s) problem(s) Market entry customer segment Market entry customer segment critical need Benefit/Competitive differentiator (which addresses critical need compellingly) Analytical appeal Logical expression Market understanding Emotional appeal Creative expressions Brand equity Market Leadership Positioning and Branding: A Comparison

Branding Technology-Based Start Ups:

10 Branding Technology-Based Start Ups Company and Product Positioning Strategy Segmentation Differentiation, Value Proposition Company Culture Corporate Identity System Logo Presentation template -Website, collateral design Business cards Etc. Brand Values/Attributes Personality Brand/Naming Architecture Company Technology -Platform Product/Service

Building Brand Equity:


Why Brand Building in Technology is So Difficult:

12 Why Brand Building in Technology is So Difficult Costs too much ($ $, time, etc.) Not quantifiable until after it’s done Logic is king, brand is ‘emotional’ “Accidental successes” = not really necessary Too much technology or market change = why bother? Caught up in technology aspects Level of marketing understanding Inability to reach consensus

Objectives of a Brand Strategy:

13 Objectives of a Brand Strategy Distinguish company from ‘the pack’ Agree upon branding execution (creative expression) Management team/Employees Company and product names Corporate identity program Tag lines/Slogans Packaging Buying and using experience Distribution channels Lay foundation for brand equity

PowerPoint Presentation:

14 Company Brand Established Product Brand Established Broad Market Awareness and Acceptance of Product Product Position Established in Customer Segment Differentiation Established Technology Product Company Time & Experience Market Segment Ownership Customer Segment Expansion Market Entry Customer Segment Experience Market Entry Customer Segment Dialog Synergy Provided by Brand Equity Product Position as Foundation for Corporate Brand

PowerPoint Presentation:

15 Positioning and Branding Truths A well-executed positioning strategy is the foundation for a strong brand, which is the foundation for market leadership Your company has a defacto position and a brand, whether you intend to or not you like it or not you manage it or not For a positioning and branding strategy to become ‘real’, market participants must agree with your company’s claimed position and brand see and experience evidence of positioning and branding claims If your company’s position isn’t clear, the brand won’t be either Even positioning and branding strategies cannot overcome a poor product, or poor execution Investments in building a corporate brand or “silver bullet” product brand must be prioritized; very expensive and difficult to do both simultaneously

PowerPoint Presentation:

16 Investors Sales Channels Target Accounts Partners Industry & Financial Analysts Trade & Business Press EXISTING ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ NEEDED ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ Strategy Evidence Positioning Strategy Statement Positioning Strategy Company Business Strategy Market Entry Customer Segment Messages, Brand Strategy and Programs Strategy Market Leverage Company Building Brand Equity

PowerPoint Presentation:

17 Branding Strategy Evaluation Do all employees identify, and identify with, Company brand values? Do customers and market participants identify, and identify with, Company brand values? Do customers and market participants see a logical link between Company positioning strategy and brand strategy? Has the brand carried multiple products/services to market, successfully, over time?

Brand Equity Assessment:

18 Brand Equity Assessment Price premium? Customer preference? Replacement value? Stock price? Earning power over time?


19 Summary Branding effort must be proactively managed from the beginning of a company (or product), both internally and externally The questions are: - what level of effort required for your market environment - what level of resources is to be involved? - In what timeframes? It requires a long term view and commitment and branding begins with the executive team


20 Presenters Rosemary Remacle, Consultant Market Focus 408-244-0412 [email protected]