Best of the Blog 2012: 10 Surefire Ways To Grow Your Brand
Most businesses would love to grow their brands by jumping into new product categories. But it’s a lot harder than putting the same logo on a different package—no matter how nice the design work. Some brand extensions rack up huge sales, but countless others fall flat or fail all together.
So how do you help your clients or bosses pick winning brand extensions? Know the 10 surefire ways to grow your brand. These proven strategies are based on a study we conducted of 500 successful brand extensions, so you’ll have no problem impressing the MBA types at your next client presentation.
1. Shift the Form
Think of brands as shape-shifters. A product can tap into these superhero powers by changing its method of delivery, preservation, store placement or ingredient profile. Just one example: Taco Bell Salsa at the corner grocery store.
2. Transfer a Component
Many brands are known for one key thing. A flavor, ingredient, scent or color. And this component can be desirable in other product categories. Crayola followed this strategy by bringing creative color from its crayons to soap paints, sidewalk chalk and more.
3. Transfer a Benefit
It’s the same concept as number two—except you’re transferring a benefit. Arm & Hammer baking soda removes odor, and the brand uses that same benefit to sell everything from cat litter to deodorant.
4. Transfer Special Expertise
People aren’t the only ones who can be experts. The Food Network is known for its culinary skills, and this expert reputation gives the network’s branded cookware a competitive advantage.
5. Sell Companion Products
There’s probably something people are already using with your client’s brand. So why not sell those companion products, too? Mr. Coffee offers customers both coffee makers and coffee.
6. Leverage Customer Base
You’ve built up a good relationship with customers. Why not take it to the next level? Moms see Fisher-Price as trustworthy, and this fact helped the toy brand expand into diapers.
7. Leverage Lifestyle
Lifestyle brands help consumers define themselves, and this identity often crosses product categories. Jeep means outdoor adventure, a concept that sells tents and bicycles just as well as off-road vehicles
8. Leverage Celebrity Expertise
Not every celebrity is known for looks. Some actually qualify as experts, and this special knowledge can help sell related products. Emeril Lagasse shows off his cooking prowess on TV, and those skills boost sales of Emeril Cookware.
9. Leverage Celebrity Lifestyle
Almost everyone wants to live like a celebrity—at least for a day. Paris Hilton’s socialite, party girl ways make her perfume line appealing to people who want to live like Paris.
10. Change the Game
You can turn your brand into a game changer in two words or less. Modifier words help you shift a weak or tired brand into a new category. Adding the phrase “intensive care” helped Vaseline sell lotion without shoppers being turned off by greasy memories of the original Vaseline product.
Want to learn more? Read our full report: Extendonomics: 10 Laws of Successful Brand Extensions.
John Parham is President and Director of Branding at Parham Santana, The Brand Extension Agency. He has spent the past 25 years developing big picture strategies for his client’s branding, licensing and seasonal programs. He also contributes to Parham Santana’s Extendonomics blog and AMEX OPEN Forum.
|For more branding resources, visit My Design Shop.Identify by Sagi Haviv, Tom Geismar and Ivan Chermayeff|
Authored by legendary designers Tom Geismar and Ivan Chermayeff, and their partner, rising star Sagi Haviv (called a “logo prodigy” by The New Yorker) Identify is the ultimate authoritative examination of the process, approach, and principles that result, time and time again, in brand identity design with the potential to become iconic, and thus succeed in representing a brand in the mind of the public for generations.