The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding : How to Build a Product or Service into a World-Class Brand
This marketing classic has been expanded to include new commentary, new illustrations, and a bonus book: The 11 Immutable Laws of Internet Branding.
Smart and accessible, The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding is the definitive text on branding, pairing anecdotes about some of the best brands in the world, like Rolex, Volvo, and Heineken, with the signature savvy of marketing gurus Al and Laura Ries. Combining The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding and The 11 Immutable Laws of Internet Branding, this book proclaims that the only way to stand out in today's marketplace is to build your product or service into a brand -- and provides the step-by-step instructions you need to do so.
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September 17, 2002
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Excerpt from The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding by Al Ries
What is branding? From a business point of view, branding in the marketplace is very similar to branding on the ranch.
A branding program should be designed to differentiate your product from all the other cattle on the range. Even if all the other cattle on the range look pretty much alike.
Successful branding programs are based on the concept of singularity. The objective is to create in the mind of the prospect the perception that there is no other product on the market quite like your product.
Can a successful brand appeal to everybody? No. The same concept of singularity makes certain that no one brand can possibly have a universal appeal.
Yet, broadening the base, widening the appeal, and extending the line are all popular trends in marketing. The same forces that try to increase a company's market share are also the forces that undermine the power of the brand.
It's the difference between selling and branding. Could you sell a $100 Rolex watch? Sure, you could probably sell millions of them and in the process increase sales of Rolex watches. But what would happen in the long term to the Rolex brand? A cheap Rolex would ultimately kill the expensive Rolex brand.
The same principles apply to almost every aspect of marketing. In the short term, conventional marketing strategies (expansion and line extension) can increase sales, but in the long run they usually undermine the power of the brand and decrease sales.
Conventional marketing is based on selling when it should be based on branding. Marketing is not selling. Marketing is building a brand in the mind of the prospect. If you can build a powerful brand, you will have a powerful marketing program. If you can't, then all the advertising, fancy packaging, sales promotion, Web designs, and public relations in the world won't help you achieve your objective.
Marketing is brand building. The two concepts are so inextricably linked that it's impossible to separate them. Furthermore, since everything a company does can contribute to the brand-building process, marketing is not a function that can be considered in isolation.