The literal meaning of product is an article, item or service that a company puts across for sale. A company incurs significant costs when making a product, and they then sell it in the market at more than the cost price so as to gain a profit. It is evident that it is the features and attributes of a product that help in drawing new customers and retaining existing customers; however, in the present times, a vital part is also played by branding and packaging. These two concepts of marketing will be discussed subsequently.
Definitions and explanation
Branding is a marketing strategy used to develop a distinct name, image or logo of a product to attract the attention of the customers. Its objective is to provide a unique identity to a product so that it is different from the products of other companies. It also seeks to develop trust and loyalty among the customers for the product. In addition to creating an impression of the product in the minds of consumers, it also creates expectations within the customers regarding the brand. Companies use branding as a marketing tool to make the customers aware about the product.
The process of branding is continuous, and the marketer uses it to create a long-term relationship with the customers by determining their changing requirements and providing them products that fulfill these requirements. A product can be identified easily because of branding.
An active form of branding takes place when the marketer is able to develop brand value for the customers, i.e. they should be able to convince the customers that their product is considerably different from others in the market. A person who is brand-conscious only selects a brand that he/she has complete faith in, and does not think about trying other brands.
There are different components of branding, for example, selecting a name, logo, image, colour and style for the product to make it distinct from similar products created by its competitors. Branding serves as a means of asserting ownership and providing a unique brand name to its product so as to distinguish it from the brands of its competitors.
In the process of packaging, the company creates an attractive packet, cover, wrapper or container that is used to enclose the product for being distributed and sold to the customers. The purpose of proper packaging is not only to produce an appealing packet for the product, but also to keep the product safe and in its original condition. Packaging is one of the most important elements of marketing as it is the first thing that customers see about the product. Hence, it helps in promotion of the product at the point of purchase. Packaging provides information about the brand and helps in clearly displaying a brand.
Therefore, the main objectives of packaging are:
- brand identification
- serving as a means of communicating information about the product, including descriptive as well as persuasive information
- distributing the product while ensuring that it is not damaged
- serving as a means of promoting the product at the point of purchase
Packaging includes various activities pertinent to designing, examining and creating the wrapper, container, packet, etc. for enclosing a product.
Difference between branding and packaging
Some of the major differences between branding and packaging are discussed below:
Branding is the strategy used to develop a unique image of a product/service in the eyes of customers so as to attract them towards the product and create trust within them. In addition, it seeks to differentiate the product from similar products/services provided by competitors in the market. Packaging, on the other hand, refers to the process through which the container, packet, wrapper or cover for enclosing a product is designed, evaluated and produced.
Branding seeks to provide a unique identity to a product and to make it different from other products in the market. On the other hand, the purpose of packaging is to promote the product and to keep it safe from any kind of damage. Packaging ensures that consumers receive the product in its original condition.
The different elements of branding are name, logo, color, sign,, etc., whereas packaging comprises of color, logo, font, description, etc.
Branding helps in establishing trust and long-term associations with customers. It plays a part in customer retention and increasing loyalty among customers. On the other hand, packaging helps in gaining the attention of customers.
Branding vs packaging – tabular comparison
A tabular comparison of branding and packaging is given below:
|Creating a unique product/service, that is different from those of competitors so to attract customers and develop trust.||The process of designing, assessing and creating the packet, wrapper, container, etc. for wrapping the product.|
|Its purpose is to make the products unique and distinct from other competing products in the market.||Its purpose is to promote the product and keep it secure from any kind of damage so that it reaches customers in its original form.|
|It includes name, color, logo, sign, etc.||It includes color, font, logos, description, etc.|
|It helps in establishing trust and long-term associations with customers. It seeks to retain existing customers by increasing loyalty.||It helps in gaining the attention of customers and drawing them towards the product.|
Conclusion – branding vs packaging
Branding and packaging are very important for companies as they facilitate the buying process. Branding will help companies in creating trust within their customers, leading to long-term associations. Branding is used to make a product unique and distinct from other products in the market. This will be beneficial for companies in the long-run. Packaging is also very important as it helps in attracting customers and compelling them to purchase the product. It helps in drawing the attention of customers by providing them information about the brand. Hence, marketers should focus on these two aspects if they wish to sustain brand loyalty and develop long-term relationships with customers.