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Golden Rules of Brand Extension Every Company Must Follow

December 16, 2016 |
Brand & Identity
5 Golden Rules of Brand Extension Every Company Must Follow

You can be the biggest company in your nation or any small scale organisation, a day would come in the history of your company to spread your arms into new categories or a new product line. Entering into a different product category altogether is very tricky. It takes years and decades in some cases for a company to establish itself as a valuable brand. A name that people trust on. If not implemented properly, this move can bring serious damage to the overall brand image and profitability. Brand Extension is the most appropriate way to go about it.

What exactly is Brand Extension?

In simple terms, it’s a marketing strategy practised by companies in which they introduce a new product or a new category using their existing brand name. Like every strategy or plan, the Brand Extension also has certain rules for it to be successful. Let’s take a look at the top 5 rules to follow during Brand Extension.

1. Identify Your Brand Equity

The companies attempting to dive into a new product category have surely achieved some brand equity. If your company is still under the process of building its brand name, then entering into a new category would mean starting from scratch. The Brand extension process would become very tedious and will also mount uncertainty about the success of the process. So identify your brand’s real value and analyse how much the customers are loyal towards your brand.

2 . Classify The Core Characteristics of Your Brand

The first and the most important rule is to identify your brand persona and the core characteristics of your brand. You must be aware about how people perceive your brand. Like if your attributes are rough & tough, street smart and you want the extended product to be smart and classy than that will be something out of your alignment.

Ensure that the new products wear the mask of your brand. You can play around with the colour schemes, logo, imagery etc. for the same. The goal is to keep the branding intact with only a slight variation to highlight the difference in the new product.

3. Back Your Step With Solid Reasoning

The decision of Brand Extension should have a solid backing up. Perform a thorough analysis to analyse the current position of your brand. Understand the challenges involved in the process and measure the chances of success. Many prominent brands have failed in the past while entering into a new product category only because they jumped into it without having any solid reasons to do so.

4. Understand Your Brand Architecture

You must identify if you are a House of Brands, Branded House or a Hybrid? Brand architecture is an important aspect which needs to be considered while extending the brand. A House of Brands depends on multiple single brands while the parent brand sits quietly in the background. A branded House runs multiple brands but all in the same brand name. And, as the name suggests Hybrid is a combination. The model of your Brand Extension should be designed based on your brand architecture.

5. Test Before You Go All In

The success of your new product is not certain. If you have a loyal customer base then you can do a pilot test before you hit production. Getting your customers’ input on your plans will be a huge contribution to a long-term success. Form a small test group and record their feedback for validating your product. It’s the best start for Brand Extension.

To conclude, if you follow these rules along with some expert advice, the extension of your brand can be done very efficiently. Never lose the essence of your primary brand as it will be the foundation of any brand extension effort. Talk to our Brand experts today and explore your Brand Extension possibilities.

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