Brand relaunch and proliferation


Brand Relaunch:

Some brands fail to take off, some others face decline after a spell of profitable life; and in yet other cases rate of growth is not enough for the item. The companies having invested money and efforts in them do not want to give up. They usually like to give the brand one more trial; some improvements / changes are incorporated and the brands are relaunched with the support of a new campaign. Here are some examples,

Wipro’s Santoor soap ended up as an also-ran soon after its launch. The company after sometime relaunched it with some changes in the formulation as New Santoor supported by a new promotional campaign. New Santoor soon became a major brand in the premium soaps category.

Close-up provides another instance of successful brand relaunch. It was launched in mid 1970s as the gel toothpaste, it was the relaunch in 1989 in red and blue variants supported by an extensive product sampling and promotion campaign that catapulted Close-Up to the No.2 position in the tooth paste market.

Brand Proliferation

Brand Proliferation is the opposite of brand extension. While in brand extension, new items are added using an existing brand name and several products are offered under the same brand name. In Brand proliferation more items are brought in with new brand names. In other words, the firm has several brands in the same product/product category. It means that the list of independent brands swells up. For instance, Unilever has more than 25 brands of ice creams and P & G has more than a dozen brands of detergents.

Brand proliferation can help expand the market as well as the company’s market share in the category. It can also increase the company’s clout at the retail level by offering variety. New Brands also generate excitement for the sales team of the Company. At the same time there are also many pit falls in brand proliferation.

More brands from a company’s stable enhances enhance competition in he market. It also paves the way for company’s brands to compete among themselves, a phenomenon known as ‘Brand cannibalization’.

In particular when a firm introduces a number of brands in the same product line with an amount of parity among them, the danger of cannibalization is high; the share of individual brands can come down. Another disadvantage is that the company may dissipate its resources over several brands, which may not guarantee proportionate returns ; nurturing just a few brands to a highly profitable level often prove to be a wiser option.

A good marketing strategy strikes a fin balance so that too many brands do not result in brand cannibalization and erosion of profits. For instance HLL manages it well. It enjoys a 70% market share of 400,000 tons personal wash market. It resorts to both brand extensions and brand proliferation in a balanced manner in these categories.

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