Thursday, November 02, 2006

Branding

Branding is the term used for the process of creating a series of images, symbols, name, slogans, and design schemes for the identity of a corporation. Branding became popular during periods of illiteracy. Think about it - you didn't know how to read, but you heard that the butcher with a picture of an steer had the best cuts of meat. Thus you knew who your friends preferred. It was simply a sign.

In this country branding has become more than a sign for an item or corporation. In this country, branding touches our hearts and emotions. Branding tells us that a Coke will provide us with excitement and fulfill a "need" within us. Coke is no longer simply a drink - it is much much more. In reality, the brands that we buy into do not fulfill a need (although commercials imply they do). They leave us wishing for that emotional fulfillment. We purchase more in an effort to get what the ads tell us we will receive. Remember, graphic designers are paid to pull us in and convince us of a need to purchase.

Everything that we purchase identifies us with a brand. If we purchase a Coke, we are telling others that this is our preferred brand. The shirts that we wear have a logo - whether it is a polo logo or large lettering. These shirts are virtually free advertisements for corporations. If anything, we pay the companies to be able to advertise for them! How is that thought for you?

Think about what you use and purchase. Do you want to advertise for XYZ company? Do they have the standards you want to support? You really do have a choice!

I have decided that I do not like the overt manipulation of Target's commercials - especially the "want it, need it, got it" commercial. I will not shop there any longer.

7 comments:

Chelee said...

I'm so glad you're talking about branding.
A month into the compact and I'm becoming more and more sensitive to overt advertising. I've started removing visible brand tags from clothing and shoes. It's really bothering me that I'm an advertisement.

Erin said...

I LOATHE the Target commercials. But, I still heart Target.

tracey said...

Wow - giving up Target is huge. I agree with your thoughts on the commercials. However, since I don't have television I rarely see them...good for you...

What I can't stand is when I flip through a magazine while standing in a checkout line and I see companies trying to sell window coverings and capret with sex and the idea of affluance. Really...that just blows my mind...it is just blinds or carpet. It won't make you any sexier or take you into a higher tax bracket. Yet people buy into it...where have the critical thinking skills gone?

BurdockBoy said...

I wonder who came up with the idea of wearing logos as fashion? If one stops and really thinks about it, why is having someones name sewn or silkscreened on a garment by worker in China cool?

I almost entirely buy used clothes and I make sure if they have a logo, it's not meant to be the attraction. I'm actually thinking about sewing a patch over the small embroidery names on a couple of my clothes. Even companies that tend to be more ethical, I still don't want to be an advertisement for them. If I recommend them by word of mouth that's one thing, but I don't want to be a billboard.

Andrea said...

Yes, I saw that commercial and obviously I thought it was overkill. I am careful of branding and do not like to "advertise" my in my clothing.

MrsR said...

This is so true!!

Sara said...

I have become more and more aware of branding on apparel...especially now that I have to clothe another little person. I am amazed at the commercialization in children's clothing...and how many parents are completely unaware that they are creating "perfect little consumers". What are you teaching a 2 year old everytime you put on their Dora sweatshirt and Dora shoes and put the Dora backpack on them? They may not understand it now, but when they are older, they will continue to seek out branded items. It's a fight to keep our children's minds! Great post.