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The Marketing Mix: Products and Brands - Essay Example

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Explain what Fournier means by "having a relationship" with a brand. Fournier (1998) implies that if one was to observe the key traits of relationships in the interpersonal domain and compared these to the key traits of how people interact with brands, one would find the two to be the same…
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The Marketing Mix: Products and Brands
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Download file to see previous pages 344). Using two brands chosen from the categories below, explain whether or not you believe that customers have relationships with those brands. The two brands are: brand of firearm, the GLOCK pistol and brand of fast food restaurant, McDonalds. According to Anon (2001) consumers are willing to form relationships with brands that demonstrate power advantage and / or experience advantage. McDonalds epitomizes both of these. Whereas numerous fast food outlets have continued to spring out, the McDonald retains market leadership insofar as global outlets and global sales go. The Golden Arches logo, the 40 year old Big Mac and the speedy service at its franchises have the McDonald experience to its customers. Of course some of McDonald’s consumers have not been too pleased with its increasingly widening menu. There are even critics such as Cooney (n.d.) who believe that McDonald’s strategy of expanding its menu is weakening its brand strength. However, what they fail to realize is that McDonald’s is no longer just an American brand but a global brand with a global presence seeking to satisfy global palates. This demonstrates what Fournier (1998) refers to as relationship being a process phenomenon that allows the brand to evolve and change over a series of interactions and in response to fluctuations in the contextual environment. On the other hand, the GLOCK pistol is a highly rated firearm among the pistol enthusiasts in the United States. This is especially so considering that it is the firearm of choice for most law enforcement units worldwide. However, unlike similar highly rated products where the power of word of mouth recommendations from friend or family tend to influence one’s loyalty and relationship to a brand, for the case of the GLOCK this may not be true. The decision as to whether one should settle for a GLOCK or a Berreta is, according to many gun enthusiasts, based on how the gun feels on the client’s hands; the gun has to feel right in one’s hands (Craig, 2009). There are two opposing camps in the United States: the pro-gun control and the anti-gun control. The effect of one of the United States’ strongest lobby groups the National Rifle Association (NRA) could also have an impact on the gun brand loyalties of its membership. Expand your thinking and explain whether, based on Fournier's paper, your own experience and your knowledge of other people, customers have relationships with all brands. For starters, Fournier (1998) in her paper explains that brand relationships depends on a diverse range of factors such as one’s culture and upbringing, one’s present situations in life, and so on. Secondly, when we look at the key traits of relationships in the interpersonal domain it is also arguably true that brands possess the necessary attributes needed to form a relationship. However, with consumers increasingly becoming more and more exacting many brands have been left unable to match these high expectations. In such a scenario consumers are forced to make do with that which is available. This cannot be termed as a relationship per se because it is fleeting, and forced out of necessity. For the few brands that are able to give consumers the value that they seek, the satisfaction of both parties in the relationship is ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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