Brands at Labbrand - Labbrand reveals the hidden dimensions of Brands

Today’s globalized world is characterized by an ever-increasing pace of change. People are faced with technical, cultural and social changes on a daily basis, challenging their ability to cope and creating a need for stability, something reassuring and dependable that stays constant over time.

Successful brands have managed this feat. Brands such as Mercedes Benz, Coca Cola and Nike to name a few, have all been integrated into our daily lives and become synonyms for luxury, refreshment and healthy successful lifestyles among other things. These companies have successfully crafted an identity that goes far beyond the mere single dimension of sight. They have crafted an identity which functions on many levels and unites to express something so substantial that makes it relevant to many individuals.

However, even today many people do not understand how brands came to be or on which levels the interaction between brands and people takes place.

Originally products where branded as a way to establish their identity. The ‘brand’ was specifically associated with the name of what was being identified. As marketing techniques became more sophisticated, and competition more fierce, once simple products evolved to become sophisticated symbols of recognition that encapsulate our entire experience, all the emotions we share with the brand and the reasons which persuade us to favor one brand over another. Today, brands encompass both products and services.

To understand the different dimensions of interaction between a brand and its environment is the core of where branding starts. Branding can be as simple or comprehensive as one wishes it to be, but the key to successful branding will always be linked to understanding the different dimensions of interaction between a brand and the people it interacts with.

At this point one might be intrigued to ask, which dimensions these might be. To answer this, one must first agree on what a brand should do, how to define this elusive notion. At Labbrand we believe that: the image a brand enjoys is defined by the sum of perceptions in the minds of its consumers, employees and stakeholders.

This definition already takes three different types of interaction into account. That is, the interaction a brand has with the people who consume it, those that work with it and its stakeholders. However, with this definition, one important question still remains, that is: where does this interaction take place, how are perceptions formed?

A holistic approach to understanding brands can define these dimensions of interaction in four points, namely:  

  • Markets and consumers
  • Products and services
  • Design and Communications
  • Culture and behavior 

Each dimension is unique and also varies in importance regarding the different stakeholder groups. However, these dimensions are not independent of one another, but are intrinsic parts of a unified brand model.

Each brand, regardless of whether it is a corporate or product brand, is active in each of these dimensions. Successful branding depends on the ability of the brand manager to understand how their brand is performing in each of these dimensions in relation to its consumers, employees and stakeholders.

This article is part of a 6-part series. The second article will introduce the goals of branding. The following 4 articles will each introduce one of the above mentioned dimensions of successful branding.

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