We are surrounded by brands everywhere. They help us so many ways that we take them for granted and often don’t even realize how they help us. When we go shopping for food, we are guided to a place that we know and trust. Walking down the supermarket’s aisles, our favorite brands signal to us and end up in our shopping basket.
The relationship between consumers and brands has to be beneficial to both the consumer and brand. Consumer research has found 13 significant benefits accruing to consumers. These can be categorized as, Economic, Functional and Psychological. Brands assist consumers in decision-making.
Let’s dive into this fascinating topic in greater detail and see just how important brands are to all of us.
The 13 Benefits of Branding to Consumers
Advertising is done to promote the interest of the brand. Brand owners are promoting their interests. However, consumer research has shown that brands provide economic value for money, functionality in developing the required quality to solve consumer problems, and psychological satisfaction.
Economic benefits – brands provide value and choice
1. Brands promote competition and drive choice
Competition between companies to offer the best products and services force them to invest in product development and quality improvement.
2, Brands improve consumer value
The competition forces companies to be competitively priced, giving the consumer the benefit of lower prices.
3. Brands ensure consumers against risk
The reputation risk to the brand ensures that companies evaluate the risk of product failure to consumers and the potential litigation costs.
4. Brands provide consumers with choice
For consumers to have the choice of many brands ensures competition, driving down costs for the consumers and requiring continuous product improvement.
Functional benefits – higher quality and product innovation
5. Brands must add more value to consumers
Brands must offer products that make the consumer’s life easier, safer, or provide more customer satisfaction.
6. Brands must meet and exceed product quality expectations
The customer expects quality from branded products. Customers benefit from the manufacturer trying to maintain and improve on the product consistently.
7. Brands provide reliability and thus reassurance
Companies will spend a lot of money during the product development phase to ensure that products are reliable and will not encounter failure during use by the customer. Product warranty provides the consumer with the peace of mind that if the product fails, the brand will repair, replace or refund them.
8. Branded products are fit for the purpose for which they are advertised
Product testing and manufacturing process control ensure that the product performs as advertised. Customers will not be disappointed by the product experience due to the prevention of product failures.
9. Manufacturer brands are more widely available
Easy access for customers to branded products is essential. If customers struggle to find the product advertised, they will look for alternative brands that are readily available. A good distribution strategy is essential to the success of a brand.
10. Brands subsidize consumer media
Sponsoring events such as the Olympic Games, other sporting and cultural events help pay for the broadcast rights, allowing consumers to watch the events on television.
Psychological benefits – provide consumer satisfaction
11. Brands simplify consumer problem-solving
Consumers feel rewarded when they can buy brands that help make their lives easier and provide solutions to their everyday problems.
12. Branding helps consumers feel good about their purchases
Feeling good about the brands that consumers buy is a massive contributor to brand value. Consumers will reward themselves with premium branded products to feel a sense of accomplishment and show off their success.
13. Brands have social benefits for consumers
Branding provides consumers with a sense of belonging. The brand is the mark of belonging to a social group with which the consumer wants to identify. Fitting into social groups can be very stressful, so people want to look and feel that they qualify to belong to a social group.
Brands owners are trying to establish a win-win relationship with consumers. It makes planning demand, setting the price, stocking the retail stores and all the tasks related to successfully marketing and managing their brand much more straightforward.
Successful brands can alert their loyal customers of new product launches and pre-sell even before they launch. It helps to determine demand and thus how much production capacity to install, how much raw material to order. It sets the brand up for success.
The brand-loyal customers are alerted and given first access by the brand, making these early adopters the most potent marketing tool, brand advocates. These brand advocates derive a lot of esteem from being singled out and given preference. They feel cared for and thus become more loyal.
How is Economic Benefit Derived for Both Consumer and Brand?
The Economic benefits that consumers derive from the brand result from the competition created between brands to be the first, the best technology, and offer the best value. The brand protects the consumers against poor quality and service because these would weaken the brand. Consumers are given a product warranty that assures them that if anything goes wrong with the product they purchased, the brand will make good on its promise of good quality.
Consumers are given a choice between good brands at higher prices and lesser brands at lower prices. Depending on their buying power, budget brands offer consumers a good product at a more affordable price.
How do Brands Provide Functional Benefits to Consumers?
Brands seek to introduce new technology to consumers that will add value to the product experience. The new technology must set a new quality benchmark to convince consumers to adopt (buy) the latest technology. The brand will protect its value by ensuring that the product quality and customers service provide consumers with a good product experience.
Brand advertising will guide consumers to where to find the product for sale. A good distribution strategy will help consumers get access to the branded product. If the consumer struggles to find the brand in the marketplace, they will lose interest and find another brand.
Brands Owners often use their brand communication budget to sponsor events as a form of brand advertising. It allows for the funding of such events and for the television broadcasting rights to be paid. Consumers can thus watch events like the Super Bowl, Olympic Games, or other sporting codes on television. Without the billions of Dollars of brand advertising money, very few events would be possible, and consumers will lose the opportunity to experience these events.
How do Consumers Derive Psychological Benefits from Brands?
The psychological benefits provided by brands are arguably the most important to consumers. Economic welfare has resulted in consumers wanting to reward themselves for working hard. Brands create aspirations for consumers. The brand provides a level of prestige and recognition for the consumer.
The consumer looking for reward is assisted by brand advertising. Brands help consumers to choose what to buy, thereby solving their need for self-reward. The purchase makes the consumer feel satisfied and shows off their newly acquired product to their family and friends.
The social benefits to consumers derived from brand association and ownership are essential in the consumer’s ownership experience. Being seen by others wearing a particular brand of clothing or driving a premium car gives the owner the confidence and reward that they are successful. The brands with which they surround themselves are an affirmation of their achievements to themselves and others.
Consumers would find life very hard without brands to help us decide what to buy, where to buy it, how much to pay for it, and why we need it. Branding in nature helps animals to identify food, select a mate, and even avoid danger. In the modern world, the principles of brand marketing are used to communicate benefits to consumers. Without this brand communication, life would become enormously complex. Brands in the modern world provide the biological markers that we look for in nature.