Brand Architecture

In previous articles we have discussed the importance of protecting the name of your product and how your brand’s relationship with its packaging design -color, shape, photography – makes a difference and guarantees success on the shelf.

We already know that a good brand reflects the personality of the product and effectively conveys what benefits consumers to becomes an added value to the market. A good brand is considered a promise of worth that reflects the values and benefits of a brand, for which the consumer is willing to pay a certain amount of money. A good brand should have a clear essence, differentiating itself. To achieve this a brand architecture is key. But what is it?

Brand architecture is the tool that allows businesses, regardless of their size, to articulate their brand in relation to its consumer public. It mainly consists in organizing strategically all company’s brands and relate them to products and services. It’s how far you can extend a brand, considering its limitations.

Monolithic Model (Brand of the House). It is the use of a single brand for the corporate and business level in all products, services and lines of business. This model allows the company to offer one or more products backed by a name that gives them exclusive differentiating attributes. This model is efficient, simple and easy to understand. Helps to achieve scale economies and facilitates the introduction of new products and services.

Independent brands Model (House of Brands). Opposed to the above, in this model we can find different and independent brands coexisting for different business models. In this model there is no visible connection to the corporate brand, which operates only as owner, and every product or service works as a single. This model is very flexible and allows the acquisition of trademarks, but needs more communication resources to generating brand awareness. Maximizes freedom of action, but allows minimal synergies.
Support model marks (Endorsed House). This model also known as “Make Backup” combines the corporate brand and product brands or business, with the explicit support of the former to the latter. Corporate branding brings vision, confidence and capability that supports each sub-brand . The sub-brands express particular values ​​that are favorably received by a specific group of consumers. This model combines the values of the specific brand with corporate brand and communicates growth in the company. On the downside, the corporate brand can not cover business conflicting with each other.

Asymmetric or mixed model. This approach is based on different architectural models for different business lines. Often this model comes from a monolithic system that has expanded into new market segments. In such cases, independent labels are created for new markets but the unit mark for the core activities of the company is maintained.

In the decisions you make for your brand portfolio should always keep in mind the perspective of consumers. The model you choose is the best suited to be applied involving the entire company, as each member of the company is representing the brand. There must be a close relationship between the values​of the brand and the members of the company, and they should feel involved participants. Therefore, a constant internal communication plan is fundamental, and it must be informative and bidirectional, capable of receiving ideas or proposals.

Do not forget that a brand and its value is present in the minds of consumers. Build a well-ordered portfolio so that there is synergy between your brands and is effective for sales. The brand architecture is critical when companies make the decision to expand their brand and create, introduce or extend their product category.

When to consider a possible extension of your brand will need to ask: how many extensions are appropriate? How many are excessive? Is the wear margin supported by the brand? Do you need to create a “premium” or “low cost” brand? In Invisible Design we can help find the most appropriate and timely model.

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