The value of a brand is not just to do with the product or service on offer. Another important element is the meaning and connection the brand has with the customer. Customers can be willing to adopt the values and meanings of a brand and use it as a means to express themselves if they believe that the brand says a lot about who they are. For this reason the meaning that a brand creates can be just as valuable as the product or service itself.
When choosing a brand, the customer will take be greatly influenced by its look, values, and message.
The customer is concerned here about what the purchase says about them as a person. How will other people perceive them because of it? This is why customers choose brands that are associated with things they want to be aligned with. Customers will use these brands as a means of expressing their identity. In fact a lot of our identity comes from the type of purchases we make.
Customers judge companies on what the brand stands for and the beliefs associated with this. It is not just the benefits that can be obtained from the product or services but also how the brand can benefit their life. They want to know how purchasing the brand will benefit their identity.
When choosing a product or service the customer is not only looking for the cheapest deal with the most extra functions. They are also greatly influenced by what they believe the brand stands for. This is why any company needs to be upfront and honest. The internet means that information can be passed freely and quickly and any bad behavior by a company can become common knowledge rapidly. If a company goes against the beliefs and values that their brand claims then the customer can quickly find out about this. An example of this was NIKE and how their use of cheap overseas labor damaged the brand.