Edited by Bernd H. Schmitt and David L. Rogers
Chapter 4: Brand Identity: The Guiding Star for Successful Brands
Franz-Rudolf Esch DO MANAGERS LIVE THEIR BRAND? Managers are aware of the power of strong brands and they emphasize the importance of brands. Nowadays nearly every company pretends to be brand driven. But do managers really live their brand on a daily basis (Esch et al., 2006b)? When discussing brand-related topics with managers it often becomes evident that they are sometimes under the impression that the brand simply stands for the logo and the nice pictures in their mass communication, and for nothing else. Accordingly, in large companies, marketing and the corporate communication departments are predominately responsible for product and/or corporate brands. Since their options are regularly limited, they concentrate mainly on mass communication and public relations. Important consumer touchpoints with the brand, as well as those of other stakeholders, are often neglected (Davis and Dunn, 2002). This is the case in many insurance companies; salesmen are regularly unaware of the company’s brand identity and thus do not act as brand ambassadors. In international corporations, the employees responsible for operations in diﬀerent countries or those in diﬀerent business units are not sensitive to the brand and deﬁnitely do not contribute to implementing the brand inside the company; this is supposed to be the task of the company’s brand experts only. Automotive manufacturers often develop and market cars without regard to the brand’s identity. From their point of view, all that matters is selling as many cars as possible and securing jobs. This approach might work with strong...
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