Brand Identity and Brand Image

2:37 AM

Sorry for not updating my blog regularly, school's just been giving me endless amounts of work but I'm now dedicating more time towards this blog as I think blogging about the industry not only helps me learn more about it but gives me something to show to people especially those in the fashion industry. I've always felt that a fashion blog is not only about showing your viewers what you're wearing as almost every blog does that but rather expressing opinions about shows, reviewing collections and in general more writing on different aspects of the industry such as marketing, business etc. So here is my first fashion article on brand identity and brand image.

We all are aware of "brands" and we have our own preferred brands such as Chanel, Comme Des Garcons, H&M, Zara and whatever it may be. There are two things about a brand. Its Brand Identity and Brand Image. 

Brand Identity is how a brand wishes to identify itself. It represents how a brands wants to be seen and known in the market. A brand communicates its identity to its consumers through  branding and marketing strategies and this is why every brand is unique because of its identity.Brand identity includes  elements   such as logo, design,colors etc. 

Logos of various fashion brands that most people are aware of

Brand Image on the other hand is the impression that a consumer has of the Brand's whole personality. Brand image is developed through advertising campaigns, product's appeal, functionality and overall value. Brand image is the mental feedback that a consumer has when they purchase from a certain brand. Now brand image can be further improved by options such as better customer service, durability of product, shipping charges, social networking with consumers, frequent sales, discounts and customer rewards. 

One thing I learnt from my London College of Fashion short course " Fashion for Teenagers" which I took last year with Tutor Toby Meadows was that if you can make a consumer feel special, the more likely they are to  shop from your brand. Its all about building a trustworthy relationship with your customer whether its allowing them to sign up for some sort of loyalty and rewards program which in turn rewards them with points every time they shop which results in them receiving some sort of gift or special invitations to VIP shows if they reach x amount of points. This in turn gives off a positive brand image. 

I think one of the best examples of this personally is the Frequent Flyer program( Skywards Member) offered by Emirates Airlines which I am part of. There are 4 types of Skywards Members; Blue, Silver, Gold and Platinum with Blue being the first tier of member you are when you first sign up for the program and Platinum being the highest tier of member you can become in which you earn the highest number of TierMiles each time you fly. Emirates basically tells you that if you reach Platinum Tier, you are guaranteed a Business Class seat, higher amounts of baggage allowance and etc. This encourages consumers to sign up for programs like this and fly Emirates more often and have the chance of being treated like a VIP and earning free business class seats because this makes the consumer feel special and worthy of being them. Personally I think this is a great marketing strategy and keeps the brand in tip top condition n relation their brand image. 

Another example of a great marketing strategy to develop brand image is the Fashion Night out by publishers Conde Nast and their own publication Vogue. First introduced in 2009, it quickly spread to over 30 cites globally such as Delhi and Shanghai. FNO allows designers, models and consumers to shop and support the fashion industry and always receives massive turnouts. On the contrary, sometimes a brand identity does not give off the right brand image to its consumers. For example, there is a worldwide store which a lot of people do like to shop at but I do know a number of people who have said that the quality and durability of the product is only limited to usually a year which is a very short shelf life for any clothing piece as no one likes a rip off. This results in a tainted image for the store.

In conclusion, brand identity and brand image go hand in hand. With a brand establishing its products to consumers, a brand image is created. It can either be good or bad and that all depends on the brand's ability to market successfully. After all, the world does judge based on first appearance. Visual is everything in the industry.

Here is a video giving you more info about FNO spoken by the one and only queen of fashion, Anna Wintour

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