What Is A Family Brand?
A family brand, also known as an umbrella brand, is a singular, overarching brand identity for different products/services of a business. Family or umbrella branding is a potent marketing ploy used to manage several products under a single brand, making them part of a standard product group or line, etc.
Successful family branding strategies generally use the extensive reach, penetration & awareness of a prominent brand to its maximum potential. The name, iconography & identity of a well-known brand is used to promote and enhance the credibility of newly-introduced products & services.
The Walt Disney Company, Amazon, The Tata Corporation, Pepsi Co, The Coca Cola Company, Unilever Corporation, etc., are significant examples of a family brands. For all such companies, consumers infer the characteristics of a product from another similar & renowned one under the same umbrella brand.
Family branding is markedly different from individual branding that promotes each product in a stand-alone fashion. It is a potent risk reduction strategy and a tool for bringing homogeneity to product lines. This method improves identity & marketability and is a powerful ploy to claim uniformity in quality.
How To Create A Family Brand?
As consumers get assailed with ads & promotions from every possible avenue, having a prominent & easily recognizable identity can help one stand out from the crowd.
Risk reduction, competitive advantage, instant awareness, fast market penetration- are some of the primary reasons behind umbrella branding. Introducing a new product under a famous brand name gives it a massive advantage over contemporary competitors.
So, what does it take to build a powerful family brand?
Well, more so than money, it takes TIME. The world’s most prominent umbrella brands (Proctor & Gamble, Pepsi Co, Tata, etc.) are behemoths who have built their reputation and credibility through the years. Besides financial investments, time, careful strategies, and responsibility are crucial for nurturing and developing a formidable brand identity.
- Developing a powerful brand identity is key to any umbrella branding strategy. Up and coming companies need to have a singular focus & long-term vision to build a powerful identity that connects with consumers.
For businesses with substantial recognition, it is all about the astute brand, cost and reputation management, alongside effective marketing campaigning.
- Connecting with consumers effectively and building better relationships is crucial in family branding. Businesses must focus on developing and fostering those relationships on an emotional level for the best results.
- The idea and the messages behind an umbrella brand must be strong, consistent, and transparent. It must align with the company's vision and image and be distinctively different from everything else out there.
- Dedicated, agile and intuitive omnichannel marketing campaigns are crucial for promoting and extending umbrella brands. It is best to have powerful tactics and an exclusive promotional schedule associated with the umbrella brand to ensure a pitch-perfect public image.
- The degree of cohesion among the products under an umbrella brand, consistency in quality and pricing variability are significant aspects determining brand equity.
Effective and successful family branding strategies depend upon critical market analysis, efficacious consumer behaviour modelling, pricing & brand management, intelligent promotion, minute performance monitoring & prompt risk control.
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What are the best Examples of Family Branding?
Here’s a look at some of the most prominent family branding examples.
- Starbucks Corporation
Starbucks Coffee is an American multinational corporation that offers a myriad of products & services under the same corporate brand name. Some of the company’s products are:
- Starbucks Tea
- Starbucks Drink Ware
- Drinking equipment with the Starbucks label
- Starbucks Syrups & Toppings
- Virgin Group
Founded by Richard Branson, the renowned British entrepreneur, Virgin Group is a multinational brand with global recognition. The business uses its prominent brand image to engage in brand extension. Using powerful umbrella branding strategies, the company has brought forth:
- Virgin Drinks
- Virgin Green Fund
- Virgin Atlantic Flights
- Virgin Books
- Virgin Games
- Virgin vacations
- Virgin Spa
- Virgin Life Care
- Virgin Earth
- Virgin Mobile and much more
- The Tata Group
One of India' most prominent and oldest business conglomerates, the Tata Group has a massive product portfolio. The company is one of the most valuable brands in India and enjoys widespread recognition & respect across the country’s varied demographics.
Tata is a major example of successful family branding in India. Under its umbrella brand name, the company delves in:
- Automobiles (Cars, trucks, buses, coaches, etc.)
- Steel & steel products
- Consumables such as tea, salt, pulses, spices, drinking water
- Electronic appliances
- Consultancy services
- Online retail services
- Direct-broadcast satellite provider
- Insurance and finance
- The Coca Cola Company
One of the oldest and largest beverage manufacturers globally, The Coca Cola Company is an American multinational with an extensive global presence. Billions consume the company's product, and the brand name & iconography enjoy sincere appreciation & loyalty among the masses.
Coca Cola offers a wide variety of products in numerous categories. Here are some of the most prominent ones among them all.
- Carbonated Cola/Soft Drinks
- Mineralized Water
- Health Drinks & Electrolytic Drinks
- Root Beers
- Bottled Water
- Sparkling drinking water
- Tea and Coffee
- Fruit Concentrates
- Vitamin Water
- General Electric
Probably the oldest company on this list, General Electric has ventured into myriad industries and product categories. They have an extensively diverse set of businesses such as aviation finance, energy, healthcare, lighting, oil & gas, power generation, etc.
Substantial brand equity and copious brand awareness allow GE to succeed across numerous domains. Here's a look at their extensive product and service categories.
- Power Plants
- Aircraft Engines
- Landing Gear
- Avionics Systems
What are the benefits of a family brand strategy?
This section recaps the most significant benefits of implementing a family branding strategy.
- Family or umbrella branding is a powerful marketing strategy that involves using the credibility & recognition of an established brand to promote up & coming products/services.
- Risk reduction, cost control, and cohesive marketing strategies are significant advantages of umbrella branding.
- Umbrella branding minimizes brand development costs.
- Advertising and promotional effectiveness & efficiency increase as businesses get to focus on a single brand and develop versatile, overarching ideas.
- Positive brand equity affects all the products & services under an umbrella brand.
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What Is The Important Role Of A Family Branding Strategy?
Family branding strategies focus upon what the business or organization stand for. Unlike single brand strategies, umbrella brand marketing has higher stakes as they involve multiple products/services. In many cases, a business’s identity, reputation, and vision are closely associated with the family brand. The role of a good family branding strategy is thus vital for ensuring an impeccable image.
Unlike mixed branding strategies, umbrella branding is more sensitive to consumer behavior, market trends, competitor strategies, awareness & perception, etc. Strict quality control, well-thought-out pricing strategies, and dedicated marketing can lead to successful family branding. And with a successful family branding strategy, businesses can enjoy immense profitability, recognition, trust, loyalty, and success across their product/service portfolios and domains.
Every product associated with Coca-Cola, Tata, etc., is synonymous with quality and credibility. People know that they will receive the best, which is the magic of umbrella branding.
The role of a good umbrella branding strategy is indispensable for both MNCs and rising start-ups.
What Is The Difference Between Umbrella Branding & Family Branding?
There’s no difference whatsoever!
Umbrella branding is another term for family branding and vice versa. As discussed in the preceding sections, these terms refer to a prominent marketing practice wherein a single brand name promotes and sells two or more related products or services.
Positive brand equity, risk reduction, cost reduction, and efficient marketing are the primary incentives for engaging in umbrella branding. Umbrella branding is closely associated with brand extension, with only a minor difference being the degree of commonality of the products involved.