Arketi friend, David Cummings, recently wrote a blog post titled Products and Company Name Should be the Same. In it, he recounted how early on his company, Pardot, decided that their product needed a separate name from their company; however, over time he came to the conclusion that the product and company name should be one and the same.
David, we agree (most of the time) and here is why.
3 Goals of Brand Strategy
A company should consider branding each product as a strategic investment. The top three goals of brand strategy should be:
- Increasing customer loyalty,
- Differentiating the product from the competition, and
- Establishing market leadership.
Branding architectures try to optimize the customer’s view of the product in relation to the company itself and the other products in the company’s portfolio. The product may be branded as a stand-alone product, associated with other products, or simply associated with the company as a whole.
Branding in service markets is made difficult because of the intangible nature of services. A key differentiator can be to emphasize the people of the company that distinguishes the service from the competition.
Technology companies often have short product life cycles and complex products. Branding individual products that may have short useful lives is costly. Here, the company brand can have a major impact on the customer.
Business customers have complex purchasing processes. A company with a strong brand has a better chance of making the short-list of vendors when a company considers a major purchase.
What we currently see happening in the marketplace, supported by academic research, is a move away from branding new products as stand-alone brands. Instead, the idea of an overall company brand or an umbrella brand over the product line or business units is preferred.
What are your thoughts when it comes to aligning products and company name?