Clarity, Consistency And Innovation: Private Brand Imperatives

The October issue of the trade magazine PL Buyer features the following guest commentary from yours truly.

 

CLARITY, CONSISTENCY AND INNOVATION:
PRIVATE BRAND IMPERATIVES

Private brand excellence requires retailers to adopt a new mindset. It requires that the retailer incorporate private brand as the critical part of their strategy — and not as a nice to-have element. Retailers must live and breathe brand in every aspect of their business.

They must demonstrate their commitment to both their retail brand and their private brands by consistently implementing the full range of communication tactics so that every customer and associate is certain of their commitment.

Over the last 30 years, few retailers have been able to apply a consistent day in and day out effort to truly build their private brands. Target, Loblaws, Tesco and Trader Joe’s has all been able to capture share and build customer loyalty, but even they have had their missteps. So what are the keys to private brand success?

 

CLARITY OF FOCUS

  • Develop focused, consumer relevant brands and commit to building them as corporate assets.
  • Create a dedicated brand team.
  • Commit to long-term brand building while encouraging shortterm growth.
  • Focus on a strategy that builds a portfolio of consumer relevant private brands.
  • Build one-, three-, five- and 10-year plans and enlist the entire organization to make them happen.
  • Do not confuse brand management with product development.

CONSISTENCY OF EXECUTION

  • Consistent package design validates the customer decision and lets the customer easily recognize the brand.
  • Consistent quality is essential.
  • Consistent merchandising enhances the brand recognition.
  • Celebrate your brands as assets.
  • Marketing is crucial.
  • Consistent pricing clarifies the brand positioning.

COMMITMENT TO INNOVATION

  • Build a culture that both rewards and expects innovation.
  • Develop brands that, at their core, are innovative.
  • Encourage and reward all partners who bring innovation.
  • Create innovation in all brands.
  • Commit to both incremental and radical innovation.

What will YOU do?

 

Read the entire issue.



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Christopher Durham

Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan).

Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s.
Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago.

Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.