Petrogram - Fall 2008 - (Page 14)
FEATURE OUT THERE How to Market Your Brand Dr. Chris Wood Getting the Message “A uthenticity is the benchmark against which all brands are now judged,” notes John Grant in the New Marketing Manifesto, and according to Michael Czinkota and Masaaki Kotabe, authors of Marketing Management, “Brand equity is considered a powerful asset that has an economic value.” You don’t have to be a major marketer, a major oil company or a major corporation of any speciﬁc size to take advantage of the enormous potential (the economic value that the authors reference) your brand equity has for sustaining and growing your business. Any petroleum marketer or small business can assess, build and protect brand equity for the lifetime of any product or service. Brand equity is the marketing eﬀects, outcomes or beneﬁts that accrue, or have accrued, to your company product(s) or service(s) over time. Consider the following when trying to assess brand equity. First, think in terms of connotations. What do people think of you and your products or services? How loyal are your customers? Hopefully, you can keep track of important business contacts and stay in touch with customers, partners, suppliers, vendors, stakeholders and others through eﬀective communications. Second, think of the business relationships you’ve established. Those relationships are the foundation of your brand equity. Your reputation is also reﬂected in relationships; and image and equity go hand-in-hand when implementing strategic communications. Finally, tell your story, which in most cases involves your company history. Many petroleum marketers have been in business for years. I know some that have been family-owned for two, three or more generations. Consider the brand equity you’ve developed through each generation of management. It’s exciting to think about your company history and what it means to all of those who have shared in your success. Tell them your story, and remind them of who you are and what you represent. Never assume someone knows you well enough and that you don’t need to bother touching base with them from time to time. There are some communication tools that can be utilized by any petroleum marketer seeking to convey and build upon a brand’s equity. News Media News media are a great place to start. Most people not familiar with mass media think of public relations as the professional service trained to access media. But it’s not necessary to hire a public relations practitioner to help you get your story out to the community, though one’s expertise can certainly come in handy. Don’t hesitate to contact your news media when you have timely promotions, milestones to celebrate, new products or services or other news and developments. A lot of petroleum marketers are surprised that they have newsworthy events that would be welcomed submittals to local or trade news media. Again, don’t underestimate the interest the public may have in your company, brand and story. Paid Advertising Once you’ve connected with the “news” side of mass media, consider advertising if your communication need is immediate or if your message must be controlled. While news coverage is the “free” exposure, the down side is that you have less control over it. But establishing relationships with news media can keep you on the forefront of positive community relations, which are most beneﬁcial in the event of a crisis, such as a site accident or natural disaster. Paid advertising, on the other hand, serves a nice priming function to alert targeted audiences of your brand and its qualities with a controlled message. For jobbers representing large oil companies, or even regional suppliers, adverwww.fpma.org 14 | Petrogram | Fall 2008
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Petrogram - Fall 2008
Petrogram - Fall 2008
Welcome, New Board Members
Getting the Message Out There
Spotlight on FPMA's 2008 Convention & Trade Show!
Out & About the Industry
Alcohol Beverages & Tobacco Regulation: Questions and Answers
Hedging 101: Part II
What Owners Should Know
The Price-Gouging Statute
Conference of Committees Registration Form
Index of Advertisers
Petrogram - Fall 2008
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