Whether you are an entrepreneur or the CEO of a Fortune 500 company, every person interested in running a successful business knows that brand marketing is one of the most important aspects of getting your product into a successful market.
When shopping at your local grocery store and are faced with a choice between either a well-recognized brand of spaghetti sauce or an obscure name that no one’s ever heard of, the vast majority of customers will go for the recognizable brand name product, even if it´s a little bit more expensive.
Not just in Canada but globally, Google has been the most recognizable brand in the country since 2013, and for good reason. People use Google products both at work and school and the high quality of the products they offer has come to make most people consider Google to be a trustworthy brand for their everyday use.
Our friends at Gustin Quon, a Winnipeg branding firm, share the lessons learned from branding and markets in Canada, so that you can take the right steps to get your brand successfully into the marketplace.
The Case of Target in Canada
In 2015, the well-known chain store Target closed close to 200 stores across Canada. While Target is one of the largest stores across the continent and a major competitor to mega stores like Wal-Mart, they were forced to pull the plug on their stores across the entire country of Canada.
While there are a number of reasons for the failure of Target in Canada including poor leadership, supply-chain management, and other reasons, an unfortunate brand marketing campaign was what ultimately lead to the failure of Target in Canada.
Several years ago, when Target entered the Canadian market, their main slogan was “expect more, pay less.” This marketing strategy attracted several consumers and customers who were looking for a higher quality alternative to other Wal-Mart type stores without having to pay an arm and a leg. However, making promises is easy to do while living up to those promises is much harder.
While customers were expecting high quality products at discount prices, Target was plagued by empty shelves and prices that were routinely twice as expensive as similar products offered by their competitors. Ultimately, customers learned that the Target simply didn’t live up to their promises, and people chose to take their business elsewhere.
From the experience of Target, it is evident that one of the most important lessons for serious brand marketers is to live up to the promises you make to consumers. While anyone can come up with a fantastic sounding slogan to accompany your brand, you need to be able to live up to the hype and offer customers what they are expecting. If you fail the expectations you have built up through your brand, customers will quickly search for alternatives.
Social Media Brand Management
With the advent of social media and other online platforms, much of the advertising world is rapidly changing. Everyone from presidential candidates to local convenience stores are learning that if you want to win over supporters or customers, you need to connect with people on social media.
One of the biggest challenges that social media presents to brand management and brand marketing is that your customers are granted the ability to pronounce their own opinions regarding your brand and the products you offer. While TV, radio, and other traditional forms of advertising allowed companies to have control over how their brand was perceived, social media allows pretty much anyone to comment on their own personal experience with your brand.
Although this can be extremely empowering for a business, it can also be destructive. Ultimately, allowing consumers to have the ability to share their opinions and estimations of your brand is a sign of confidence in the product and brand you have to offer. When independent customers rave about the quality of your product or brand, others will quickly take notice.
In Canada, there are several social media optimization and digital marketing companies that will allow your brand to find ways to take the most advantage of the benefits that social media offers while also allowing you to filter out some of the negative effects. You can read a good review of the top 10 social media optimization firms in Canada here.
The Importance of Brand Marketing
These two examples from brand marketing in Canada offer insight into how you and your company can make the most out of your brand, garnering customer support and building an image that clients across Canada will come to recognize and trust.