We’ve all heard this story a million times.
Somewhere in a small office or a garage, a 20-something prodigy develops a revolutionary product. This product captures the imagination of billions, changes the landscape of an entire industry and transforms into a powerful brand.
Everyone wishes to recreate this tale. Everyone wants to become the next Steve Jobs and create something as iconic as Apple.
But some small businesses take a different approach. They don’t create a product of their own but market other brands to create revenue.
However, even without their own products, these ventures strive to create a brand and build a loyal customer base.
So how can companies that promote other brands become a brand on their own?
To get the answer, it’s first important to differentiate products from brands.
Brands and Products: What’s the Difference?
While it’s true that products can become brands onto themselves. And sometimes the brand name can be used to refer to products–there are some fundamental differences between the two.
Companies make products but it’s the consumers who make the brands. It’s the consumer perceptions, experiences, expectations with the products that give birth to brands. While Products offer function while brands offer emotions.
For instance; Starbucks’ product is a coffee. However, its brand includes everything from the epochal logo, consumer experience to that oh-so-familiar white cup. It’s the overall package that makes Starbucks a preferred choice for millions. In other words, people are pulled in by the Starbucks brand.
And that’s the reason why companies invest heavily in branding and put a lot of thought into coloring schemes, logo design, and packaging.
Most of the time, brands are built around products. However, that’s not always the case.
Brands Without Products: Lessons from Amazon
When Amazon started as an online bookstore in 1994, no one guessed it would turn into a multi-billion dollar behemoth.
Initially, Jeff Bezos‘ company did not manufacture any products on its own. But that didn’t stop Amazon from creating a buzz that would take to unprecedented heights of success. Walmart has a similar story.
Plenty of retailers have been able to create a powerful brand identity without manufacturing a product.
But what about affiliate marketers? Can they achieve the same?
Becoming a Brand: A Possibility for Affiliate Marketers?
The Entrepreneur describes affiliate marketing as;
“A way for a company to sell its products by signing up individuals or companies (“affiliates”) who market the company’s products for a commission.”
Since affiliate marketers have little physical presence, can they establish a brand on their own?
Moreover, is it REALLY NECESSARY for them to become a brand in the first place?
Michael Mercer runs EMUCoupon, a website that accumulates coupons from a variety of Australian retailers. This model of affiliate marketing is being replicated throughout the online sphere. A website offers coupons for brands and when consumers purchase though these coupons, the website gets a piece of the profit. RetailMeNot has been able to emulate this business model …read more
Read more here:: B2CMarketingInsider