From Brandr to Brand Touch, Never Stop – Journal of World Marketıng Summıt 2019

Markalaşma tarih boyunca nereden nereye geldi ve daha da önemlisi nerelere gidecek?

Bana sorarsanız daha adil ve yaşanabilir bir dünya için markalar gelecekte ciddi ve samimi çaba göstermek zorunda kalacak çünkü tüketici bunu öncelikle talep edecek.

Bu görüşlerim World Marketing Summit 2019 dergisinde yayınlandı. Dergi  sadece basılı olarak dağıtıldığı için yazıyı paylaşmak için kendi sitemde yayınladım, değerlendirmenize sunarım.

Güven Borça


From Brandr to Brand Touch, Never Stop


The word brand dates back to Old Norse, the ancient North Germanic language from which modern Scandinavian languages derived. Brandr originally referred to a piece of burning wood. It wasn’t used as a verb until late Middle English, when it came to mean “mark permanently with a hot iron.” By the seventeenth century, it referred to a mark of ownership made by branding.

The practice of branding livestock is much older than the word. Cave paintings from the Stone Age suggest that early man might have marked cattle with symbols drawn in paint and tar. By 2000 BC, livestock owners switched to a more permanent method: burning. Egyptian funeral monuments, approximately 4,000 years old, depict branded cattle. (Skyword)

Coming to our story, Mr. Henry was “branding” his cows with the letter H by hot iron in these days. The purpose is to prevent confusion with the other cows in the village. And he believed that his cows were better quality. Meanwhile, he was producing good cheese, which was well known in the neighborhood.


He started to write his name on the packages, and Henry cheeses started to be sold in the cities. The Royal family liked his cheese and ordered directly. He was so happy and selling his cheese at the double the price of the market average. The value of a brand was first seen in these times.

Then what happened? Some other cheese producers started to use Henry, Henry, the letter “H” on their products too. Mr. Henry was not happy and he wanted a protection for his name from the authorities. This was discussed and accepted. Brand registration officially started in Netherlands in 18th century. It became a business standard in 19th century in Europe and America. Today, the word brand is defined as “making sign and legally protected name” in many dictionaries.


The number of cheese manufacturers and sellers increased in time. Mr. Henry asked for a new logo from his friend, to be seen as better and differentiate his product from the competition. The friend was an artist, and created a very nice logo for Henry. He also added an excellent cow picture. The new package was liked by consumers and registered with them. These logotype was registered by authorities as well. Then, Henry Cheese became a well known brand.


In time, many other cheese manufacturers designed excellent packages too. A new profession called package designer emerged. Those products started to be sold in many countries. His son, Mr. Karl Henry, opened a factory in America and extended the product line, produced some other cheese products for local markets, then needed some ideas to differentiate themselves in new markets. Their sales manager said that this new cheese was easily spread on bread. They claimed that this was the “softest cheese” in the market and easily spread on bread. They made press ads and some posters on the streets. People liked the idea and sales doubled.


Soon, many manufacturers started to produce soft cheese as well. In the meantime, television was getting more popular and people started to watch TV longer and longer times in a day. TV ads became very attractive and effective. Henry Cheese Co. managers convinced the boss to go to a new advertising agency. The agency recommended to them a very funny tv ad with a celebrity. The cost was high but he accepted. The TV ads found the mark and brand became known nationally. Subsequently, sales increased as well.

Brand Management

Now the third generation in the Henry family was in charge. Sisters and brothers were working together, but sometimes problems happen. Especially in the new product development and advertisement. Personal preferences were different and making decisions was getting harder. Then they hired a consultant. He said that the manufacturing department should focus on quality and efficiency, the sales people should increase the distribution, the finance department should do finance and the advertising agency make the ads. The owners should not make the product development and advertising. In this case, you need a person to manage the brand. Their duty will be to think about and optimize the short term sales targets and long term brand scores. You should make regular consumer tests. Don’t make business decisions based on your personal choices. They accepted, and the marketing department was established by the new Marketing Manager, who transferred from P&G.


The new marketing manager explained his approach to brand management. It is 4P. This means that the marketing people should not focus only on advertising or sales. They must look at the whole picture from now on. Analyzing the market and consumer trends well, than briefing the R&D department for new products. Follow the process, test the products with consumers and launch if everything is OK. Before launching, make careful pricing analysis and make strategical pricing. The price must be decided carefully; good enough to create sales volume yet also make a profit for the company. So they started to make brand P&L’s. And make sure that a new product would penetrate nationwide and start mass communication. Together with tv ads, many consumer promotions start simultaneously. Merchandising materials distributed to stores etc.


By the 1970’s, the marketing department was applying the 4Ps and results were good. The product range extended to other dairy products, but the sales increases were not the same as in previous years. Even if they introduce many new products, the competition does similar marketing activities. Many companies make television ads and many new supermarket chains grow. Then what to do? The Marketing Director went to a new seminar called “positioning” and was very impressed. They invited the speaker, Jack Trout, to the company. Mr. Trout said that they made excellent ads, but each ad tells a different story for the brand. “You don’t own something in consumer’s mind. You don’t have a position. This was working a decade ago but now it’s the time of “information overload” and people don’t remember what they’d watched a day ago. So position your brand and be consistent on communication.” They did it. They have positioned their brand, written a brand guide and distributed it to all partners. And it worked… Many years passed like this.

Brand Sense

Meanwhile, the marketing team went to another seminar and they understand that their communication was only targeting eye and ear. They had as excellent new logo and tv jingle. In fact, there is a new trend in branding that the brand communication could target to the other senses like nose and skin. So people can see, hear, smell and touch to your brand. A brand smell is being selected and this is used in sales points. A unique milky smell motivated the consumers to buy their product. Also, some of the packaging materials have changed to give more natural touch to the consumers.

Brand Identity

In the 1990’s, the company became a part of a large global food group. Meanwhile, new markets started to emerge globally. They started to sell in Russia, China, and other Asian and middle Eastern countries. Then the reactions and expectations changed. It was easier to sell in the US and Europe, but the expectations of Russian consumers were different, and many new Muslim consumers in the middle east were asking if the products were “helal.” The marketing team started to work with many different agencies all around the world. They had seen that translating the tv ads was not working everywhere. Therefore, they needed alternative brand management practices. First, they produced a global brand guide. It was summarizing the core and extended values of the brand and the portfolio roles of the sub-brands. They invited all the marketing teams and conducted seminars on brand identity. Then the professionals in different countries kept the core values of the brand and made adaptations for local culture.

Brand Experience

Digitalization became the major trend all around the planet in the 2000’s. Use of internet and social media became a common practice everywhere. Online sales increased too. This was a totally new World. Private label products of supermarkets were getting higher shares. Putting the products on the shelves and advertising and merchandising were not enough anymore. People were demanding. They wanted to have more experiences, more fun and satisfaction with the brand, and share these in social media. Especially the young generation didn’t prefer to go to the supermarket. Instead, they order from digital marketplaces. The company organized accordingly. Now managing the brand in every touch point and keeping the core brand values became a critical issue.

Brand Activism

Along with globalisation, the company built new plants in many countries. It started to buy products from different sources. Then some problems emerged. Child workers in some countries and their working conditions became a major issue. Some NGO’s wanted a change in these manufacturing plants. The sources of some raw materials were being discussed in social media. Some influencers said that raw materials and manufacturing processes were not healthy. The company followed all these and established a team to correct them as much as possible. Some consumers believed, others not. The efforts continue.

Brand Touch

As a final step, the future of capitalism started to be discussed after 2008 global crisis. Many experts say the global supply increased so much and there is no such demand anymore. Also, producing more and more is not good for nature. The planet can not hold this overload. Therefore, the growth rates in previous decades are not sustainable. The investors should be looking at business from a different perspective. They must balance profit and purpose. They must consider global warming, equality and justice everywhere.

So the companies are discussing this issue. The answer is not easy. My opinion is that consumers will force the companies for the correct way. We will see…

All the headings are common marketing words except the brand touch. I invented this concept to define the final situation.

Güven Borça


Leading Concept Explanation In short Then what happened? 
Marketing 1.0 
Signature (Brand) Developing, naming and owning a special product I make it Copiers emerged
Registration Legally protecting your brand through the state I have it Similar products under different names
Differentiation Creating new logos and symbols to differentiate the brand- especially on the shelves It looks different Industrialization
USP Developing functional benefits to be different from competition This is unique Mass media
Marketing 2.0  
Advertisement Adding emotional benefits and creative ideas to the proposition You’ll love it Corporatizations
Brand Management Managing brands by special-expert teams We organize it Competition
4P Taking a holistic approach to marketing; product, price, promotion and penetration Look at whole picture More competition
Positioning Segmenting, targeting and owning a special position in the consumer’s mind This is it Became a standard practice in time
Brand sense Targeting the other senses like smell, touch, sound etc. Touch your every sense Globalization
Brand Identity Defining core and extended values, adapting to global markets by keeping core values Conceptualizing New channels, digitalization
Marketing 3.0  HUMANKIND Brand experience Working on touch points, improving the satisfaction and sharing experience in social media I know it Concerns on environment
Brand activism Caring for environment, planet, justice and human rights I care about it Concerns on capitalism
Brand touch Maintaining balance between purpose and profit, working for a better world and touching everything Profit and purpose balance Blue oceans ??
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