Global Brands

Naturally companies with such strong brands strive to use those brands globally. In fact, even perceived global appears to lead to increase in sales. The Internet and other technologies accelerate the pace of the globalization of brands. Even for products that must be adapted to local market conditions a global brand can be successfully used with careful consideration. Heinz produces a multitude of products that are sold under the Heinz brand all over the world. Many are also adapted to local tastes. In the United Kingdom for example, Heinz baked Beans Pizza (available with cheese or sausage) was a runaway hit, selling over 2.5 million pizzas in the first six months after its introduction. In the British market, Heinz’s brand of baked beans is one of the more popular products. The British consumer eats an average of 16 cans annually, for a sales total of $ 1.5 billion a year. The company realizes that consumers in other countries are unlikely to rush to stores for bean pizzas, but the idea could lead to the creation of products more suited to the other cultures and markets.

Ideally a global brand gives a company a uniform worldwide image that enhances efficiency and cost savings when introducing other products associated with the band name, but not all companies believe a single global approach is the best. Indeed, we know that the same brand does not necessarily hold the same meanings in different countries. In addition to companies such as Apple, Kellogg, coca-cola, caterpillar and Levi’s which uses the same brands worldwide, other multinationals such as Nestle, Mars, Procter Gamble and Gillette have some brands that are promoted worldwide and others that are country specific. Among companies that have faced the question of whether to make all their brands not all have followed the same path. For example, despite BMW’s worldwide successes, only recently did the company create its first global position.

Companies that already have successful country specific brand names must balance the benefits of a global brand against the risk of losing the benefits of an established brand. And some brand names simply do not translate. The cost of reestablishing the same level of brand preference and market share for the global brand that the local brand has must be offset against the long term cost savings and benefits of having only one brand name worldwide. In those markets the global brand is unknown many companies are buying local brands of products that consumers want and revamping, repackaging and finally re-launching them with a new image. Unilever purchased a local brand of washing powder, Bio-pan, which has a 9 % share of the market in Hungary; after re-launching market share rose to about 25 percent

When Mars, a US company that includes candy and pet food among its product lines, adopted a global strategy, it brought all its products a global brand, even those with strong local brand names. In Britain the largest any market in Europe, M&Ms were sold as Treets and Snickers candy was sold under the name Marathon to avoid association with knickers, the British word for women’s underpants. To bring the two candy products under the global umbrella, Mars returned the candies to their original names. The pet food division adopted Whiskas and Sheba for act foods and Pedigree or dog food as the global brand name replacing Kalkan. To support this global division that accounts for over $4 billion annually, mars also developed a Web site for the pet food brands. The site functions as a global infrastructure that can be customized locally by any pedigree Pet foods branch worldwide. For instance Pedigree offices can localize languages and information on subjects such as veterinarians and cat owner gatherings.