Created on: March 14, 2011 Last Updated: March 15, 2011
Family branding, also known as umbrella branding, is a common strategy among businesses. It is the practice of carrying related products all under one brand name. An example would be Cover Girl lipstick, nail polish, eye shadow, etc. Many different businesses practice this for a variety of reasons.
When you go to the store, you will see many different products carried under the same brand name. Sometimes the products will be extremely similar such as Breyers French Vanilla Ice Cream and Breyers Vanilla Bean Ice Cream. Other times they will be much further apart such as a mop and soap made by the same company.
Businesses hope to gain synergy with the practice of family branding. When a consumer likes and trusts one product, they may be drawn into other products because of the fact that they carry the same name. The business can create familiarity in a brand new product. They can gain loyal customers who will stick with their brand even through higher prices or other less attractive features. The brand will become worthwhile in itself.
Cost savings can be seen in advertising when family branding is utilized. You may see a commercial for a brand of makeup products in which no one particular product is being advertised. They may need only one ad to promote all of their products. This can save greatly on advertising spots, which can be extremely expensive. Marketing dollars can go a lot further.
Cost savings can even be utilized in the production of the product. Economies of scope may be employed when the same labels or parts are used in different products. Because they are under the same brand, this similarity is not only not a negative but a positive. It can save money with the added volume of production.
There are also negative aspects to family branding. All of the products need to show relatively consistent levels of quality. If one product is cheaper but of a lower quality, then customers may associate the entire brand with this lower quality. There can be some range in the line, but any one problem product can ruin a consumer's view of the entire brand, so businesses will have much more to lose if there is a problem. They can be hit especially hard with a recall. This is often seen in baby products when one item is recalled and the entire line of baby items suffers for it.
Family branding can be a very successful strategy and is utilized in countless products across a variety of industries. Utilized correctly it can create cost savings, attract customers and increase sales.
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