Branding is a vital aspect of marketing strategies. Companies are trying hard to build a brand value that is sustainable over a longer period of time. A brand is a name or identity with which the customers can associate them with the company. A brand name will help the manufacturers and products to stand apart from the usual crowd. A popular brand is generally considered as the product that can easily be recognized by the common masses. A brand name can be built either for the company or for the product. Some of the important aspects that are concentrated while building a better brand are the company or product's logo, symbol and design. People should be able to identify the service or product with any of these features distinctly. Brand Name – For The Company Or For The Product? Certain business men would be in a dilemma and will not be sure to develop a brand name for the company or for the product. Developing a brand name is considered to be beneficial as long as it brings in revenue irrespective of the product or the service. However, one has to give a detailed attention when it comes to building a brand. A company name would stay there in the market for a longer period of time. A company can build several products and release them in a frequent interval of time. Consider the activity of building a brand name for the product. For example, ipod is a very popular name and every other music player in the market was compared to the ipod product. It had a very strong brand name such that it influenced the minds of people to ask for ipod rather than other music players. Apple manufactured these famous digital music players and it created a brand name for the company too. There were too many other products in Apple's shelf. It has got its own brand name too. An important aspect to be seen here is that people have started believing Apple for its quality products. If it is going to launch a television set or a digital set top box, people will still be eager to buy those products. Consider the case of IBM, Google, Amazon, Cisco. Most of their products have been a massive hit. Irrespective of the products, people still identify them with the company name just because the company's name will be a long lived one. These companies started off their services in a small way and have become the best of the players in the market. It took a considerable amount of time to capture the market share. They have successfully achieved what they wanted. Yes, they have a brand name. Budding sports enthusiasts and athletes feel proud to wear adidas and nike shoes. It gives them a great pleasure to wear their sports jerseys and other sports wear. Branding has got such a potential to influence the customer's thought process and make them emotionally attached to them. Tips To Create A Strong Brand Value: Customer relationship, sales and relationship management are some of the important topics to be covered when you think about branding. Here are certain tips based on these theories to create a better brand value. Articulate brand identity Creating and articulating brand identity might seem to be a daunting task at the initial stages. An act of this sort will help you to meet the expectations of the customers. For example, consider the case of Wal-Mart and their tagline of “Everyday Low Prices”. Every customer will be attracted towards this tagline and they spend some time to spend inside their retail outlets. Consider the case of “Coffee Day” in the Indian scenario. This brand means people can sit in the couch and chat with their friends without any disturbance for long hours. They get a comfortable feeling while being inside the coffee day premises. They do not mind paying extra bucks but they like the brand name and the comfort it offers. An important key aspect is to articulate the brand identity which will help the customers to interpret in the right manner. This kind of identity will set higher level of standards and the vendor should stick to such high standards in the future. Value proposition for the product: A customer value proposition is the most important aspect when it comes to brand identity creation. Consider the case of “Big Bazaar” where they offer huge discounts and offers on 1st of every month and on alternate Wednesdays. The customers are expecting a great discount offer by which they can save few amount of money. Employees in Big Bazaar should understand the customer value proposition and every employee should be aligned to these goals and work in order to achieve them. Only if all the employees can understand the importance and value, they can have a single mission and vision and work towards it. This stage involves the identification of point of contacts in the organization where customers really interact. Find out the personnel who is handling customers on a regular basis and give them unique training experiences. This will help them to create a holistic brand experience for the customers by which the customers can get a consistent and compelling experience. These touch points will bring in more business. Marketer As A Mystery Shopper: The marketer can act as a mystery shopper and can have a floor walkthrough to understand the customer experience. This will help them to understand the customer value proposition in a better way. The pain and agony of shopping on the floors can easily be understood by this way. The marketer should note down the points on how the employees treat the customers, how well the features of a product are explained, what are the different levels of discounts being offered and about the level of customer satisfaction. Taking an outsider’s perspective will be a compelling strategy to dig out more views to give better customer value proposition. I would like to concentrate and contribute more on this topic. I will be further discussing the concept of branding with a case study some time later. In the mean time, if you think you can add points and views, then you are welcome to post it here.