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Trade Routes: Brand Management—Consistency Breeds Success

By: Michael Long and Chris Czajkowski
Posted: June 5, 2007, from the June 2007 issue of GCI Magazine.

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Louhann, for example, is strategically aligned to Henri Bendel. Upon determining that the brand is a viable addition to its portfolio, New York City-based Henri Bendel served as the launch platform and showplace for Louhann in the U.S. Additionally, Louhann has parlayed its success in New York into an effective independent retail distribution nationwide.

Even with strong retailer support, it is expected that a brand has the ability and resources to take the lead in supporting its own marketing, promotion and publicity efforts. In addition, a retailing partner expects a brand to drive day-to-day sales with solid hands-on management. This is where many smaller brands fall short, making the critical mistake of believing the retailer will run their business for them. The retailer provides a venue to merchandise, and supports a brand within its structure, but the ultimate responsibility of driving the business always rests with the brand’s management.

There must be a consistent thread throughout each aspect of the line that assures a clear and concise positioning. A brand that applies the five fundamental elements of success throughout all stages of development will maximize its chances to attract and reach its target audience via key retailing partners. It will rise above the herd and build a loyal clientele for years to come. Consistency is success.