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My personal summary of the book, “The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding,” by Al Ries & Laura Ries

Building brands is my favorite thing to do. When I first read this book years ago, it gave me a clear strategy for what to do (and what not to do). I thought it would be fun to revisit this classic and summarize each of the 22 laws, both for your benefit and mine. I hope you will find them interesting, thought-provoking, and helpful. Mostly, I hope it will inspire you to pick up the book and read it for yourself. The health of your brand depends on it.

1. The Law of Expansion

The power of a brand is inversely proportional to its scope.

When you put your brand name on everything, that name loses its power. 

Think Chevrolet. What immediately comes to mind? Having trouble? It’s understandable. Chevrolet is a large, small, cheap, expensive car…or truck. Chevrolet has ten separate car models. Why does it market all those models? Because it wants to sell more cars. And in the short term, it does. But in the long term, the model expansion undermines the brand name in the mind of consumers.

Short term versus long term. Do you broaden the line in order to increase sales in the short term? Or do you keep a narrow line in order to build the brand in the mind and increase sales in the future?

The emphasis in most companies is on the short term. Line extension, megabranding, variable pricing, and a host of other sophisticated marketing techniques are being used to milk brands rather than build them. While milking may bring in easy money in the short term, in the long term it wears down the brand until it no longer stands for anything.

If you want to build a powerful brand in the minds of consumers, you need to contract your brand, not expand it.

2. The Law of Contraction

A brand becomes stronger when you narrow its focus.

Every small town in America has a coffee shop. What can you find to eat at most coffee shops? Everything. Breakfast, lunch, dinner. Pancakes, muffins, hot dogs, hamburgers, sandwiches, pie, ice cream, and, of course, coffee. So what did Howard Schultz do? In an incredible burst of business creativity, he opened a coffee shop that specialized in, of all things, coffee. In other words, he narrowed the focus. Today Schultz’s brainchild, Starbucks, is worth $112 billion.

If you want to be a successful company, do what successful companies did before they became successful. 

When Domino’s Pizza first got started, it sold pizza and submarine sandwiches. When Little Caesars first got started, it sold pizza, fried shrimp, fish and chips, and roasted chicken. When Papa John’s first got started, it sold pizza, cheesesteak sandwiches, submarine sandwiches, fried mushrooms, fried zucchini, salads, and onion rings.

Now how do you suppose those companies became big powerful brands? By expanding their menus or contracting them?

Good things happen when you narrow the focus.

3. The Law of Publicity

The birth of a brand is achieved with publicity, not advertising.

Most marketers confuse brand building with brand maintenance. While a hefty advertising budget might be needed to maintain high-flying brands like McDonald’s and Coca-Cola, advertising generally won’t get a new brand off the ground.

Brands are born, not made. A new brand must be capable of generating favorable publicity in the media or it won’t have a chance in the marketplace. And just how do you generate publicity? The best way is by being first in a new category.

  • Band-Aid, the first adhesive bandage
  • Charles Schwab, the first discount stockbrokerage firms
  • CNN, the first cable news network
  • Domino’s, the first home delivery pizza chain
  • ESPN, the first cable sports network
  • Heineken, the first imported beer
  • Hertz, the first car-rental company
  • Intel, the first microprocessor
  • Jell-O, the first gelatin dessert
  • Kentucky Fried Chicken, the first fast-food chicken chain
  • National Enquirer, the first supermarket tabloid
  • Q-Tips, the first cotton swab
  • Reynolds Wrap, the first aluminum foil
  • Rollerblade, the first in-line skate
  • Samuel Adamas, the first microbrewed beer
  • Saran Wrap, the first plastic food wrap
  • Time, the first weekly news magazine
  • Xerox, the first plain-paper copier

All of these brands (and many, many more) were first in a new category, and in the process, generated enormous amounts of publicity. There’s a strong relationship between the two. The news media wants to talk about what’s new, what’s first, and what’s hot, not what’s better. When your brand can make news, it has a better chance to generate publicity. And the best way to make news is to announce a new category, not a new product.

Today, brands are built with publicity and maintained with advertising. 

4. The Law of Advertising

Once born, a brand needs advertising to stay healthy.

Brands are born in a blaze of publicity. As the publicity dies out, the brand has to shift to massive advertising to defend its position. Your advertising budget is like a country’s defense budget. Those massive advertising dollars don’t buy you anything; they just keep you from losing market share to your competition.

To attack a heavily defended neighboring country requires substantial military expenditures. To attack a heavily defended brand leader like Coca-Cola, Nike, or McDonald’s requires substantial marketing expenditures. Leaders should not look at their marketing budgets as investments that will pay dividends, but insurance that will protect them against losses caused by competitive attacks.

What should brand leaders advertise? Brand leadership, of course. Leadership is the single most important motivating factor in consumer behavior.

  • Heinz, America’s favorite ketchup
  • Budweiser, king of beers
  • Coca-Cola, the real thing
  • Visa, it’s everywhere you want to be
  • Barilla, Italy’s #1 pasta
  • Goodyear, #1 in tires

Unfortunately, the list of leaders that advertise their leadership is very short. Most leaders advertise some aspect of their quality.

When advertising focuses on a better product message, consumers think, “That’s what they all say.” But when advertising focuses on brand leadership, consumers think, “It must be better.”

5. The Law of the Word

A brand should strive to own a word in the mind of the consumer.

If you want to build a brand, you must focus your branding efforts on owning a word in the prospect’s mind. A word nobody else owns.

What prestige is to Mercedes, safety is to Volvo.

Once a brand owns a word, it’s almost impossible for a competitor to take that word away from the brand. Could you build a safer car than a Volvo? Probably. Many brands have already claimed to do so, including Saab, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz. Could one of these other brands own the word “safety” in the mind? Probably not.

What comes to mind when you think about owning a BMW? A car that’s fun to drive. The ultimate driving machine. BMW owns the word “driving” in the mind. And, as a result, BMW has become the second-largest-selling European luxury car in America.

Yet none of these brands (Mercedes, Volvo, and BMW) is a perfect example of the law of the word since they have all recently violated the law. Mercedes has moved into less expensive, less prestigious cars. Volvo into sporty cars. And BMW into more luxurious cars.

And so it goes. The minute a brand begins to stand for something in the mind, the company that owns the brand looks for ways to broaden the base, to get into other markets, to capture other attributes. This is a serious error and one of the most common mistakes in branding.

Go back in history. By far the most successful brands are those that kept a narrow focus and then expanded the category as opposed to those brands that tried to expand their names into other categories.

6. The Law of Credentials

The crucial ingredient in the success of any brand is its claim to authenticity.

Customers are suspicious. They tend to disbelieve most product claims. Your brand might last longer, require less maintenance, and be easier to use, but who will accept claims like these?

There is one claim, however, that should take precedence over every other claim. It’s the one claim that elevates the brand above the competition. And makes every other claim much more believable.

It’s the real thing. It’s the claim to authenticity. Leadership is the most direct way to establish the credentials of a brand. Coca-Cola, Hertz, Heinz, and Visa all have credentials because they are widely perceived to be the leading brands in their categories. When you don’t have the leading brand, your best strategy is to create a new category in which you can claim leadership.

Many companies run branding programs almost devoid of credentials. Instead, you’ll find an endless parade of almost meaningless benefits: Tastes great, saves money, whitens teeth, easy assembly, bigger, smaller, lighter, faster, cheaper. While many of these benefits may be of general interest to prospective customers, they each lack credibility so they are generally ignored.

There are also long-term benefits of leadership. Because once you get on top, it’s hard to lose your spot. A widely publicized study of twenty-five leading brands in twenty-five different product categories in the year 1923 showed that twenty of the same twenty-five leading brands are still the leaders in their categories today.

7. The Law of Quality

Quality is important, but brands are not built by quality alone.

The way to build a better brand, the thinking goes, is by building a better-quality product. What seems so intuitively true in theory is not always so in practice. Building your brand on quality is like building your house on sand. You can build quality into your product, but that has little to do with your success in the marketplace. Years of observation show almost no correlation between success in the marketplace and success in comparative testing of brands—whether it be taste tests, accuracy tests, reliability tests, durability tests, or any other independent, objective third-party testing of brands.

In a recent ranking of sixteen brands of small cars, the number-one brand in quality was twelfth in sales. The number-two brand in quality was ninth in sales. The number-three brand in quality was dead last in sales. If quality translates into sales, the numbers don’t seem to show it.

So where does the concept of quality reside? Quality, or rather the perception of quality, resides in the mind of the buyer. If you want to build a powerful brand, you have to build a powerful perception of quality in the mind.

8. The Law of the Category

A leading brand should promote the category, not the brand.

Branding is widely perceived as the process of capturing a bigger share of an existing market. Yet the most efficient, most productive, most useful aspect of branding is creating a new category. In other words, narrowing the focus to nothing and starting something totally new. That’s the way to become the first brand in a new category and ultimately the leading brand in a rapidly growing new segment of the market.

  • What was the market for expensive cars before Mercedes-Benz? Almost nothing.
  • What was the market for cheap cars before Volkswagen? Almost nothing.
  • What was the market for home pizza delivery before Domino’s Pizza? Almost nothing.
  • What was the market for in-line skates before Rollerblade? Almost nothing.

In order to build a brand in a non-existing category, you have to do two things:

  1. Launch the brand in a way to create the perception that it is the first, the leader, the pioneer, or the original.
  2. You have to promote the new category.

But isn’t it easier to just promote the brand and forget about the category? Easier, yes, but not as effective.

By first preempting the category, you create both a powerful brand and a rapidly escalating market. The most effective way to build a brand is to narrow the focus, and then make your brand name stand for the category (the generic effect). Finally, expand the category by promoting the benefits of the category, not the brand.

When you’re first, you can preempt the category. You are the only brand associated with the concept. You have a powerful publicity platform. You need to put your branding dollars behind the concept itself, so the concept will take off pulling the brand along with it.

9. The Law of the Name

In the long run a brand is nothing more than a name.

The most important branding decision you will ever make is what to name your product or service.

In the short term, a brand needs a unique idea or concept to survive. It needs to be first in a new category. But in the long term, the unique idea or concept disappears. All that is left is the difference between your brand name and the brand names of your competitors.

On a global scale, this is the biggest issue in the business community. Companies are divided into two camps: those who believe that the essence of business success is in the continuing development of superior products and services, and those who believe in branding. The product versus the brand. And the brand names that accompany these “better” products and services have little power in the prospect’s mind.

Brands are not just something to think about at marketing meetings. Brands are the essence of the company itself. A company’s very existence depends on building brands in the mind.

10. The Law of Extensions

The easiest way to destroy a brand is to put its name on everything.

More than 90 percent of all new products introduced in the U.S. grocery and drug trade are line extensions. Which is the major reason that stores are choked with brands. (There are 1,300 shampoos, 200 cereals, and 250 soft drinks.)

One reason 90 percent of all new brands are line extensions is that management measures results with the wrong end of the ruler. It measures only the success of the extension. It never measures the erosion of the core brand. Big powerful brands should have market shares approaching 50 percent, like Coca-Cola, Heinz, Pop-Tarts, Jell-O, and Gerber. But it’s hard to find more than a few such brands. Most big brands have been line-extended to death.

Who drinks Diet Coke and Diet Pepsi? Where did Diet Coke drinkers come from? Diet Coke comes out of Coca-Cola’s hide. What Coca-Cola should have done was launch a second brand. Actually, it did. After the success of Diet Pepsi, Coca-Cola launched Tab (a new brand in a new category). And Tab was doing quite well. The day Diet Coke was introduced (as a line extension), Tab was leading Diet Pepsi in market share by about 32 percent. If line extension is the superior way to build a brand, why did Tab lead Diet Pepsi by nearly a third?

The issue is clear. It’s the difference between building brands and milking brands.

Before you launch your next line extension, ask yourself what customers of your current brand will think when they see the line extension.

If the market is moving out from under you, stay where you are and launch a second brand. If it’s not, stay where you are and continue building your brand.

11. The Law of Fellowship

In order to build the category, a brand should welcome other brands.

Not only should the dominant brand tolerate competitors, it should welcome them. The best thing that happened to Coca-Cola was Pepsi-Cola, helping to create a category that has been growing like gangbusters ever since.

Choice stimulates demand. The competition between Coke and Pepsi makes customers more cola-conscious. Per capita cola consumption goes up.

Instead of welcoming competition, companies often feel threatened because they believe that future market shares will be based on the merits of the individual brands. An even playing field is not what most companies want. They want an unfair advantage, a playing field tilted to their side. Therefore, they think, let’s try to drive out competitors before they get too established.

Your brand should welcome healthy competition. It brings more customers into the category.

12. The Law of the Generic

One of the fastest routes to failure is giving a brand a generic name.

In the past, some of the most successful companies (and brands) had generic names (General Electric, National Biscuit Company, International Harvester). Companies thought they needed big, scopy, generic names. And the brand name was always the company name. The fact is, these brands/companies are successful in spite of their names. And the primary reason for their success is the strategy, not the name.

  • General Electric was the first general electric company
  • National Biscuit Company was the first national biscuit company
  • International Harvester was the first international harvester company

Being the first in the marketplace gave these companies such a head start and such a powerful presence in the market that it overcame the liability of their generic names.

The problem with a generic name is its inability to differentiate the brand from the competition. 

For example, a brand called Nature’s Resource may spend $5 million a year to break into this growing market. On the shelves of your local health store you’ll also find the following products:

  • Nature’s Answer
  • Nature’s Bounty
  • Nature’s Herb
  • Nature’s Secret
  • Nature’s Way
  • Nature’s Best
  • Nature’s Gate
  • Nature’s Plus
  • Nature’s Sunshine Products
  • Nature’s Works

Will any of these generic brands break into the mind and become a major brand? Unlikely.

The mind doesn’t deal in letters, words, or logos. It deals with sounds. You can capitalize all you want, but a generic word is a generic word in the mind, no matter how you spell it.

13. The Law of the Company

Brands are brands. Companies are companies. There is a difference.

The issue of how to use a company name is at the same time simple and complicated. Simple, because the laws are so clear-cut. Complicated, because most companies do not follow the simple laws of branding and end up with a system that defies logic and results in endless brand-versus-company debates.

Brand names should almost always take precedence over company names. Consumers buy brands, they don’t buy companies. So when a company name is used alone as a brand name (GE, Coca-Cola, IBM, Xerox, Intel) customers see these names as brands.

The view from inside the company (employees) is totally different than the view from the outside (customers). Marketers must constantly remind themselves that customers care only about brands, not about companies.

Most issues involving company names vs. brand names can be solved by asking two questions:

  1. What is the name of the brand?
  2. What is the name of the stuff inside the packaging?

Both names had better be the same or you have big problems.

14. The Law of Sub-brands

What branding builds, sub-branding can destroy.

Management tends to invent terminology in order to give legitimacy to the branding moves it wants to make.

Holiday Inn, the leading hotel/motel operator, wanted to get into the upscale hotel segment. What to do? Invent a sub-brand. So, we have Holiday Inn Crowne Plaza. Now we can have our cake and eat it too, right? But did anyone ever walk into a Holiday Inn and ask the clerk at the front desk: “Don’t you have a more expensive hotel I can stay at?

The marketing world is awash in conceptual thinking that has no relationship to the real world. Sub-branding is one of those concepts.

Customer research at Holiday Inn Crowne Plaza produced what you might have expected: “It’s a nice hotel, but it’s a little expensive for a Holiday Inn.” The company finally got the message and began cutting the mega-brand connection. From now on, the hotels will be known as Crowne Plaza, period. But in spite of the sub-branding setback, the company has moved into Holiday Inn Express, Holiday Inn Select, Holiday Inn SunSpree Resorts, and Holiday Inn Garden Court. You used to know exactly what you would find in a Holiday Inn. In fact, that was the theme of its long-running advertising campaign: “The best surprise is no surprise.”

What is a Holiday Inn Select? Go ahead. Book a room and be surprised.

Sub-branding is an inside-out branding strategy that tries to push the core brand into new directions. It captures management’s attention because of what it promises, not necessarily because of what it delivers.

You can’t apply your own branding system to a market that sees things differently. When you feel the need to create sub-brands, you are chasing the market, you are not building the brand. 

Sub-branding destroys what branding builds.

15. The Law of Siblings

There is a time and a place to launch a second brand.

The laws of branding seem to suggest that a company concentrates all of its resources on a single brand for a single market. Keep the brand focused and ignore opportunities to get into new territories.

True. But there comes a time when a company should launch a second brand. And perhaps a third, even a fourth brand.

A second-brand strategy is not for every company. If handled incorrectly, the second brand can dilute the power of the first brand and waste resources.

Yet, in some situations, a family of brands can be developed that will assure a company’s control of a market for many decades to come.

Time Inc. has became the world’s largest magazine publisher, not by launching line extensions of its core brand, but by launching totally separate publications:

  • Time
  • Fortune (not Time for Business)
  • Life (not Time for Pictures)
  • Sports Illustrated (not Time for Sports)
  • Money (not Time for Finances)
  • People (not Time for Celebrities)
  • Entertainment Weekly (not Time for Entertainment)

(Nobody’s perfect. So now we also have Digital Time, Teen People, and Sports Illustrated for Kids.)

Most marketers are too internally focused to see the power of a separate identity. They want to “take advantage of the equity” their brand already owns in the mind in order to successfully launch a new brand.

The key to a successful family approach is to make each sibling a unique individual brand with its own identity. Resist the urge to give the brands a family look or a family identity. You want to make each brand as different and distinct as possible.

16. The Law of Shape

A brand’s logotype should be designed to fit the eyes. Both eyes.

A logotype is a combination of a trademark, which is a visual symbol of the brand, and the name of the brand set in distinctive type.

Logotypes come in all shapes. Round, square, oval, horizontal, vertical. But all shapes are not created equal in the eyes of the consumer. Since the eyes of your customers are mounted side by side, the ideal shape for a logotype is horizontal. Roughly two and one-fourth units wide by one unit high.

This horizontal shape will provide the maximum impact for your logotype. This is true wherever the logotype is used: on buildings, brochures, letterheads, advertisements, or calling cards. In the competitive landscape of retail, a vertical logo is at a severe disadvantage (i.e. Arby’s vertical, cowboy-hat logo).

Of equal importance to shape is legibility. Logotype designers often go way overboard in picking a typeface to express the attribute of a brand rather than its ability to be clearly read.

The other component of the logotype, the trademark, or the visual symbol, is also overrated. The meaning lies in the word, or words, not in the visual symbol.

A great deal of effort has gone into creating elaborate symbols for use in logotypes. Crests, shields, coats of arms, and other heraldic symbols have poured out of America’s design shops in great profusion. For the most part, these efforts are wasted. The power of a brand name lies in the meaning of the word in the mind. For most brands, a symbol has little or nothing to do with creating this meaning in the mind.

17. The Law of Color

A brand should use a color that is the opposite of its major competitor’s.

Another way to make a brand distinctive is with color. But color is not an easy attribute to work with. There are thousands of words to choose from in order to create a unique name, but only a handful of colors.

There are five basic colors (red, orange, yellow, green, and blue) plus the neutral colors (black, white, and gray). It’s best to stick to one of these five primary colors rather than an intermediate or mixed color. But which color?

Keep in mind that all colors are not created equal in the eye of the beholder. Colors on the red end of the spectrum are focused slightly behind the retinas in your eyes. Therefore, a red color appears to move toward your eyes while you’re looking at it.

Colors on the blue end of the spectrum, on the other hand, are focused slightly in front of the retinas in your eyes. A blue color appears to move away from you.

In the world of brands, red is a retail color used to attract attention. Blue is a corporate color used to communicate stability. For example, Coca-Cola red and IBM blue.

When selecting a color for a brand, marketers usually focus on the mood they want to establish rather than the unique identity they want to create. Normally the best color to select is the one that is most symbolic of the category.

Color consistency over the long term can help a brand burn its way into the mind.

18. The Law of Borders

There are no barriers to global branding. A brand should know no borders.

Most companies strongly believe two things:

  1. Their brands’ market shares cannot be substantially increased in their home countries.
  2. They need to grow.

As a result of these ironclad beliefs, they insist on expanding their brands into other categories. “It’s the only way to grow,” they say.

So they fall victim to the first law of branding, the law of expansion. “Sure,” they say. “Expanding our line may be dangerous, but it’s the only way to grow.”

It’s not the only way to grow. In fact, the perfect solution to achieving both goals is to build a global brand. That means:

  • Keep the brand’s narrow focus in its home country.
  • Go global.

For years, the magic word on many products has been “imported.” Actually, crossing a border often does add value to a brand. Since value lies in the mind of the consumer, the perception of where the brand comes from can add or subtract value. Does anyone doubt the value of:

  • Watches from Switzerland
  • Wines from France
  • Automobiles from Germany
  • Electronics from Japan
  • Clothing from Italy

Every country has its own unique perceptions. When a brand is in sync with its own country’s perceptions, that brand has the possibility of becoming a global brand.

For any worldwide brand to be successful, it needs to do two things:

  1. You need to be first.
  2. Your product needs to fit the perceptions of its country of origin.

English has become the second language of the world. If you are going to develop a brand name for use on the worldwide market, the name better work in English. It doesn’t have to be an English word, but it should sound like one.

19. The Law of Consistency

A brand is not built overnight. Success is measured in decades, not years.

The most frequently violated law is the law of consistency.

A brand cannot get into the mind unless it stands for something. But once a brand occupies a position in the mind, the manufacturer often thinks of reasons to change.

Markets may change, but brands shouldn’t. Ever. They may be bent slightly or given a new slant, but their essential characteristics (once those characteristics are firmly planted in the mind) should never be changed.

If the market swings another way, you have a choice. Follow the fad and destroy the brand. Or hang in there and hope the merry-go-round comes your way again. In our experience, hanging in there is your best approach. There may be a trend to Mexican food (and there is), but should a French restaurant add fajitas to its menu? We think not.

Brand building is boring work. What works best is absolute consistency over an extended period of time. When people do boring work, they get bored. So every once in a while, someone at a company gets a bright idea. “Why should we limit ourselves to dull, boring, safe? Why don’t we brand out?”

You should limit your brand. That’s the essence of branding. Your brand has to stand for something both simple and narrow in the mind. This limitation is the essential part of the branding process.

Limitation combined with consistency (over decades, not years) is what builds a brand.

20. The Law of Change

Brands can be changed, but only infrequently and only very carefully.

Having harped on the idea of consistency and focus, why would we bring up the concept of change? Because nothing in life, nothing in branding, is ever absolute. There are always exceptions to every rule. And the law of change is the biggest exception to the laws of branding.

Where does the change occur? Brand changing does not occur inside a company. Brand changing occurs inside the mind of the consumer. If you want to change your brand, keep your sights on your target: the consumer’s mind.

There are three situations where changing your brand is feasible.

  1. Your brand is weak or nonexistent in the mind.
  2. You want to move your brand down the food chain. If you are permanently lowering the price of your brand, you can often move it down the price ladder without hurting the brand. Going in the other direction is much harder, if not impossible.
  3. Your brand is in a slow-moving field and the change is going to take place over an extended period of time.

You can be sure that the concept that brought your brand to the dance is still firmly embedded in your prospect’s mind. If you want to change your brand, first look into the prospect’s mind. Where are you? Perhaps you’re not in the mind at all. Fine, change away.

But if you are in the mind, and if you have a unique and distinct perception, then change your brand at your own risk. It’s going to be a long, difficult, expensive, and perhaps impossible process.

Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

21. The Law of Mortality

No brand will live forever. Euthanasia is often the best solution.

While the laws of branding are immutable, brands themselves are not. They are born, they grow up, they mature, and they eventually die.

It’s sad. Companies are willing to spend millions to save an old brand, yet they resist spending pennies to create a new brand. Once you understand the nature of branding, you’ll know when it is time to let your old brand die a natural death.

Companies make serious errors in judgment when they fight what should be a natural process. Yet the nursing home of dying brands does a booming business with millions in advertising and promotional dollars being spent to keep terminally ill brands on life-support systems.

Don’t waste money on walkers and wheelchairs. Spend your money on the next generation. Invest your money in a new brand with a future.

22. The Law of Singularity

The most important aspect of a brand is its single-mindedness.

  • What’s a Chevrolet? A large, small, cheap, expensive car or truck.
  • What’s a Miller? A regular, light, draft, cheap, expensive beer.
  • What’s a Panasonic? At one point in time, Panasonic was a computer, computer printer, fax machine, scanner, telephone, television set, and copier, among other things.

These are all burned-out brands because they have lost their singularity. They could, of course, remain on the marketing scene for many years because of the line-extension generosity of their competitors. But make no mistake about it. Loss of singularity weakens a brand. It’s this singularity that helps a brand perform its most important function in society. What’s a brand? A proper noun that can be used in place of a common word.

  • Instead of an imported beer, you can ask for a Heineken.
  • Instead of an expensive Swiss watch, you can ask for a Rolex.
  • Instead of a safe car, you can ask for a Volvo.

What is a brand? A singular idea or concept that you own inside the mind of the prospect.

It’s as simple and as difficult as that.