Fashion Branding Book Notes
A product is simply defined as a commodity offered for sale or as a sum of features that are meant to solve a
problem and is offered for sale.
A product & a brand are not the same thing & developing a brand is different from developing a product.
Branding: is a multifunctional process that highlights a proposed value for a product & transforms it into a real
- The branding process steps:
1. Brand decision: brand vision & brand concept
2. Positioning strategy: product mix (features & attributes), brand identity (symbols & personality).
3. Brand communication
4. Brand audit & evaluation
5. Growth or brand repositioning
Brand Decision: THE VISION: a brand is a vision, a concept, & a story coauthored by many partners. The
starting point is realizing that there is a necessity for the brand to exist & a potential for reward.
- Brand has 2 strategic goals: to bring value to consumer while satisfying need & to generate economic
return to its owners.
- Branding decision starts by recognizing that there is both an external & internal need for creating a brand.
- A branding decision cannot be made in isolation from the organization’s financial/marketing goals. It must
answer questions like who are we? What kind of business are we? What are our strengths & what are we
all about? What is our mission? What is our vision for the company?
- Generally the mission statements mainly targets internal audience. It directs the strategic decisions &
answers the important questions of why we are in business & what kind of business are we in.
- Vision statement also targets outside world. It is usually concise & long term oriented. Also presents
framework for future decisions while maintaining the flexibility to respond to future changes.
- Ex: NIKE mission statement “to bring inspiration & innovation to every athlete in the world. If you have a
body, you are an athlete.”
- In the fashion industry, decision making process/relationship between top management & the creative
department varies according to the type of brand and its segment.
- Luxury brands live on creative superiority/trendsetting. Full control/creative authority is given to
designer. Many luxury brands don’t have brand managers.
- Mass marketed brands are trend followers. In most of these companies, designs are handled by teams of
young designers or product developers whose main role is to emulate fashion trends proposed by luxury
brands’ designers. These brands have more of a marketing approach to design & almost always have
brand managers. Most commonly created by entrepreneurs rather than designers. The relationship between branding & marketing is strong & essential. Marketing supports development of
a brand in all of its stages. It also plays a vital role in the creation of emotional values through the shaping
of the brand personality & then communicating it to the outside world through its various communication
- Internal Marketing: need to sell & market brand’s concept inside the organization before you
attempt to do so to the outside world. Main purpose is to overcome any internal resistance to
new ideas or strategies as well as make it easier to implement them. it also created higher level
of communication/commitment toward shared roles. Tools include use of: training programs,
seminars, e-mails, special events, internal newsletters, word of mouth, etc. it’s essential that
every activity within organization supports brand & that everyone understands it & believes in
it. Everyone must be a brand advocate.
- External Marketing: external interaction with the market. Starts at the early stages of market
research and later activities aiming at the marketing & selling the brand concept to the rest of
the world. Promotional activities, market research/analysis are used. External marketing also
allows companies to identify a market niche that will distinguish them from competitors. Allows
companies to identify a niche that will distinguish them from competitors. Marketing pushes
necessary info/signals from the organization to the outside, allowing it to introduce brand to
world/facilitate its penetration into these external markets. Marketing also pulls a wealth of
market info into company.
Brand level: a new brand can be introduced by 1. Brand/promote the organization itself as an umbrella
under which many products are sold (ex. NIKE). With fashion brands, it can also the promoting the
designer as the institution & the brand at the same time (ex. Giorgio Armani). 2. Create separate brands,
& promotes each individually as a separate entity.
The company: it’s the sole legal owner of brand & all its copyrightable elements such as name, logo, or
technology. Also brand’s major investor & financial baker (through owners & shareholders). It is also
major risk taker from a financial, marketing, & social perspective.
The customer: plays important role in shaping of brand through branding process:
- Brand is meant to address a user’s need. Every brand is built with a target customer in
mind. Marketing principles established various segmentations of criteria such as
demographics, psychographics, Geographic’s, lifestyle, etc.
- The customer is the one who ends up determining the market position.
- Manner in which costumer sees brand/image he/she mentally creates are subject to
many influences like their experience w/brand & its competitors, as well as other
accumulated cultural, social, & economic influences.
- Customer’s verdict on brand is also major catalyst in evolution of brand. User
behavior/response to brand determines whether the brand is ready for growth, re-
branding, or demise.
- Consumer’s adoption curve: demonstrates that consumer’s adoption patterns differ in
size/timing. Celebrities, socialites, & Fashonista are eager to buy new trends so they are willing to pay a premium price and the late majority adopt trends at its decline stage
when it becomes available at discount retailers at cheaper prices.
Buyers purchase decision process:
1. Problem recognition: stage where person perceives that he/she has an unfulfilled need. This gap
represents your need. Needs can be actual or perceived, functional or emotional, they are the main
focus for branding & marketing activities.
2. Information search: after people realize need, they start to search to best options to fulfill it. This
source of info can be internal or external.
- Internal source: refer to person’s own experiences w/different products/brands
relevant to that need. Effective, cheap, less risky source of information.
- External source: external sources of info can be friends/family, consumer reports,
or promotional sources, such as advertising, publications, & salespeople.
3. Alternative evaluation: individuals evaluate alternatives based on nature of the need & their own