Module 2 Case: Marketing Mix
Brands are personifications of organizations, products, services and experiences. In this way they are the primary sources of relationships with customers, promises to customers, and customer loyalty. The process of giving a 'name' or brand affiliation to a product has developed rapidly this century. Brand marketing grew alongside the consumer society, supported by the surge in consumer durables and the expansion of commercial television. Branding gives consumers the assurance that their next purchase of a product will give them one which is virtually identical. Brand relationships are created, and exploited by the manufacturer, through the tacit guarantee of quality and consistency. However, brand loyalty is more than simple repurchasing. Customers may repurchase a brand due to situational constraints, a lack of viable alternatives, or out of convenience. Such loyalty is referred to as "spurious loyalty". True brand loyalty exists when customers have a high relative attitude toward the brand which is then exhibited through repurchase behavior.
This type of loyalty can be a great asset to the firm: customers are willing to pay higher prices, they may cost less to serve, and can bring new customers to the firm. For example, if Joe has brand loyalty to Company A he will purchase Company A's products even if Company B's are cheaper and/or of a higher quality. Brands seek to meet needs and wants of consumers, and are therefore designed in order to sell more products. Firms seek to raise the product beyond simple use value; to give it more appeal than a generic use.
I happen to agree with Dr. Fournier that people have relationships with brands and are very loyal to their particular product brands. The relationship between Verizon and its customers is strong and successful because Verizon customers feel that there is...