The process of strategic brand management basically involves 4 steps:
1. Identifying and establishing brand positioning.
Brand Positioning is defined as the act of designing the company’s offer and image so that it occupies a distinct and valued place in the target consumer’s mind.
Points of difference: convinces consumers about the advantages and differences over the competitors
Mental Map: visual depiction of the various associations linked to the brand in the minds of the consumers
Core Brand Associations: subset of associations i.e. both benefits and attributes which best characterize the brand.
Brand Mantra: that is the brand essence or the core brand promise also known as the Brand DNA.
2. Planning and Implementation of Brand Marketing Programs
Choosing Brand Elements: Different brand elements here are logos, images, packaging, symbols, slogans, etc. Since different elements have different advantages, marketers prefer to use different subsets and combinations of these elements.
Integrating the Brand into Marketing Activities and the Support Marketing Program: Marketing programs and activities make the biggest contributions and can create strong, favorable, and unique brand associations in a variety of ways.
Leveraging Secondary Associations: Brands may be linked to certain source factors such as countries, characters, sporting or cultural events,etc. In essence, the marketer is borrowing or leveraging some other associations for the brand to create some associations of the brand’s own and them to improve it’s brand equity.
3. Measuring and Interpreting Brand Performance
Brand Audit: Is assessment of the source of equity of the brand and to suggest ways to improve and leverage it.
Brand Value chain: Helps to better understand the financial impacts of the brand marketing investments and expenditures.
Brand Equity Measurement System: Is a set of tools and procedures using which marketers can take tactical decision in the short and long run.
4. Growing and Sustaining Brand Equity:
Defining the brand strategy: Captures the branding relationship between the various products /services offered by the firm using the tools of brand-product matrix, brand hierarchy and brand portfolio
Managing Brand Equity over time: Requires taking a long -term view as well as a short term view of marketing decisions as they will affect the success of future marketing programs.
Managing Brand Equity over Geographic boundaries, Market segments and Cultures: Marketers need to take into account international factors, different types of consumers and the specific knowledge about the experience and behaviors of the new geographies or market segments when expanding the brand overseas or into new market segments.