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The Definition And Traps Of Brand Identity

By Jeff Wagner

The unique sets of trademark associations that are created and maintained by a strategist are what brand identity is all about. Represented by the associations are the stand of the brand and the implied promises by members of the organization to the customers. These unique sets help to determine the stand of an organization, its core values, the perceptions of the customers, the projected personality traits and important relationships that are there.

It provides the brand with purpose, meaning and direction. Expanding the concept of branding gives it value. Its scope should not be narrow instead it should be wide as possible to achieve max strength. A limited perspective can inhibit the strategists from achieving these kinds of strengths. It also drives one of 4 principle branding equity dimensions which is associations.

The four traps involved include; external perspective trap, product attribute fixation trap, position trap and image trap. Image is what the customers perceive and it provides them with background necessary information. The trap happens due to lack of efforts that are needed to see beyond the image. When identity should be focusing on the future outlook for aspired associations, this trap looks at the past.

The part that demonstrates the branding advantage over other competitors and has the need to be communicated is what is referred to as the position. Turning an identity search into a position search is what brings about the position trap. This turn of events can inhibit full fledged evolution.

When the role of trademark individuality in trying to understand the firms basic values and purpose is not recognized by the firm, it is said to be an external perspective trap. When the business brand tactical and strategic management is focused wholly on attributes of a product, then there is what is called product attribute fixation trap.

This focus on attributes has some important limitations. There is the failure to differentiate, rational customer assumption, strategic flexibility reduction and the ease to copy. The inclusion of other perspectives as part of trademark concept broadening is key when developing a strong brand identity.

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