The number of Chinese sellers who have completed a Brand Registry on Amazon has grown 40-fold over the past four years . 95% of Amazon China sellers surveyed said that "brand building" is critical to their global business growth. More and more companies going overseas are joining the "brand camp" and regard "branding" as the basis for long-term development and the engine for value jump.
Under the tide, Amazon Global Store is committed to establishing an efficient and high-quality overseas channel for Chinese entrepreneurs and innovative brands, and has become a close friend of Chinese innovative brands on the way to the world.
On August 31st, the 2022 Amazon Brand Overseas Summit Forum , the first gathering of Amazon's global store focusing on brand overseas, was successfully held in Hangzhou! Major overseas brands and industry elites gathered together to explore the brand's overseas routes and unlock new ideas for growth !
The following is the content of the speech of Dr. Cao Hu, a special guest speaker, global partner of Kotler Consulting Group, and President of China Region of this conference – "The era of digital intelligence, new thinking of building a global brand" , to share with you!
1. How to create a "new global brand" in the era of digital intelligence ?
In today's era of drastic changes, it is an irresistible trend for "Made in China" to become a "new global brand". We are doing a lot of specific work every day, and many times we need to jump out and summarize the essence of what we do from another perspective, and how to ultimately create more excellent value for customers.
“My first point, looking at a successful business , when we look back at the reasons for its success, don’t look at how brilliant it is today, but at the root causes of its success. ”
You will find that successful brands start because they seized a certain opportunity, just like we seized the opportunity of cross-border e-commerce, seized the opportunity of consumption upgrade, and seized the global consumer's attention to the environment, society and corporate governance. (referred to as ESG) opportunities for transformation… But it is worth noting that these companies that eventually become great brands do not stop at opportunities, because opportunities are fleeting, opportunities are single-point breakthroughs , but as companies grow, In the face of more markets and variables, at this time we must be strong, shape the system, and seize the trend .
In my opinion, trends are more lasting and profound than opportunities, and are irreversibly changing the cost structure of consumers, media, channels, and enterprises. We must seize it and take advantage of the wind . "It's the trend. For enterprises, building a system needs to change from a single-point breakthrough in the past to a systematic and multi-point innovation . To become stronger and bigger, we must learn to seize opportunities and turn them into strategic growth based on core competencies.
So what is a brand? What makes a great brand?
"The second point of view is that a brand is a promise and the essence of what customers buy. All the work of an enterprise is to fulfill the promise! In the end, it is systems, trends, and capabilities that make great brands. "
When we have a good product, this is the foundation for us to achieve a great brand, but it is not enough, we need to further improve it and become a brand. A product is something manufactured by an enterprise and can be controlled by an enterprise, but the most difficult thing is, what exactly are customers buying? We can make a lot of goods, but our business is successful only when it is bought by customers, and when they are bought repeatedly by customers, and when they are bought by customers at a premium. Therefore , the product is what the company makes, and the brand is what the customer buys; the value of the product is created by the company, and the value of the brand is created by the company and the customer .
Therefore, the brand is essentially a distributed asset, an asset distributed in the hearts of consumers . It is very difficult, but because it is difficult to do, it is worth doing. Therefore, all the work of the company can be summed up in one sentence: it is all to fulfill the brand promise we give to customers.
"The third point, what really differentiates a mediocre business from a great business is not how much assets you have, not how much land you have, not how much cash you have, but whether we can seize the The slow variable that really determines the value. ”
What is a slow variable? Fine polishing of products, adherence to brand values, inspiring customers with brands, and bringing a sense of belonging to a better life … These slow variables are precisely a fundamental factor that determines whether we can become a brand.
There are many marketing concepts facing us today, and we are faced with various media, and we often fall into a kind of illusion of "expedient measures", what kind of things are easy to get me to do, what kind of popular What to do. Yes, short-term business development is good, but where is your foundation? Your foundation lies in that your products must be integrated into the lives of consumers through your brand in order to last .
The greatest value of a company is not only how many explosive products it can sell in the short term, but more importantly, in the final analysis, the marketing thinking must be changed from simply acquiring customers to turning customers into assets, allowing customers to repurchase for a long time, operating customers, and connecting customers. , let customers become our loyal fans. Because of this, brands are becoming more and more important .
2. In the era of social media where information is so developed, do you still need to be a brand?
Some people once believed that a brand is a product of information asymmetry. Today, on the Amazon platform, you can see the evaluation of a large number of customers who have purchased a certain product to help you filter products. The information becomes more and more transparent, and the brand does not exist. of value.
"On the contrary, I think consumers in the digital age need brands even more. "
When the communication of information becomes more and more convenient, when there is more and more information, you will find that the meaning of information communication becomes less and less. We need more than products, we need to go beyond products, we need to help define the brands that inspire us and help us create a better life. At this time, the brand is beyond the product, leading our lives, the brand simplifies the decision-making process and establishes a trustworthy identity .
Today, we want to pursue a better life. Brands are an important boost to a better life. Therefore, we need more brands and the ability to build brands in the new era of digital intelligence. Amazon has now launched a lot of tools, data, methods and empowerment plans to help sellers build global brands, which is undoubtedly a huge boost for Chinese manufacturing to go global.
"Brand, one of the greatest inventions of mankind, because it transcends the functional and physical values of the moment, it can transcend ourselves and enter a higher level of pursuit, which brings emotional value and resonance of values, which greatly It enriches our business value and transforms business from a business to a great profession that is respected, changes the world, and creates a happy life."
3. How did the brand get to where it is today?
I divide the brand into an "Odyssey" of brand 1.0 to 4.0 overall brand value.
Brand 1.0 to 4.0 is not a relationship between who is smarter and who is better than who, but only represents the various ways we can shape brands in different customer environments, in different industry competition patterns, and in different industries. Possibilities and concerns .
1 Brand 1.0 Period: Advertising Communication Stage
If your industry is in a category that everyone is not familiar with when the category is in its infancy, your core at this time is to use penetrating and high-penetration media to shape the familiarity of the category . Focus on advertising and become the core of brand awareness;
2 Brand 2.0 Period: Mental Positioning Stage
And when your product industry is highly competitive, the products are highly homogenized, and there are a large number of similar suppliers in the category, the core task of your brand is the brand 2.0 stage, and you need to create differentiation . Where does this differentiation come from? It is necessary for us to help customers establish a distinction and help consumers to quickly identify them. At this time, "mental positioning" has become a very important work and mission;
3 The Brand 3.0 Period: The Brand Equity Stage
But when your industry has entered a large-scale development and you need to integrate, how can brands help us build trust, so that our brand value can cover adjacent categories, brand expansion, and mergers and acquisitions during the integration process? "Brand" has become a very important booster for the company's growth;
4 Brand 4.0 Period: Brand Growth Stage
When your industry enters the level of customer management and needs to build long-term customer value, your brand is the "lubricant", "connector" and "value output engine" of long-term customer relationships.
From brand 1.0 to 4.0, brand brings us a new understanding. Brand is not only the result of long-term operation, but also can be designed and planned from the beginning, and it has become the core orientation and thinking of operation. thereby driving growth. Branding is not limited to just a result, but a process, a business model we started with.
In the context of the era of global upheaval, we see that many times the value creation space brought by "brand enterprises" is not only the commercial value they create, but also a series of social values related to the brand. That is to say, today we shape the social value of the brand has become a very important part of the added value brought by the brand.
We have made a framework summary of the various factors that drive an enterprise to achieve growth. Brand is not only a business result, but also a set of business models that guide us to create excellent customer value and achieve growth from the very beginning of the enterprise .
The growth of all enterprises is nothing more than two types, one is structural growth , which drives linear growth through more and better customers, better products, and more and more efficient channels; the other is strategic growth , which can change Industry boundaries can change the way value is created and distributed between us and our customers, leading to exponential growth.
" Brands are one of the engines driving exponential and strategic growth. "
Today, we want to build a brand globally, and to achieve global growth, the foundation is marketing, but the core foundation of the brand is to revolve around customers.
As Drucker said, "The fundamental mission of a business is to create customers. " It doesn't make sense to talk about brands without global customers. To be a global brand, we must first have a deep understanding of the social, cultural, lifestyle, purchasing standards, media habits, price bands and other characteristics related to customers in the country, as well as the narrative style of local values.
4. A major challenge for new global brands: how to better understand customers?
Here I list four global groups of people, each country is different, but in the mainstream market of today's mainstream countries, these four groups of people cannot be ignored by any of us who want to become a global brand.
1 ESG population
These people are very concerned about environmental protection, fairness, and sustainable development in terms of lifestyle, product choices, and values . They pay attention to the impact of a company's product supply chain on society, the impact on surrounding communities, the impact on the supply chain, and ultimately make our society better.
Such people believe that the ultimate meaning of a company's products and services is to make society better, not to allow minority shareholders and individuals to obtain the greatest wealth. Reflecting on consumer purchases, they prefer environmentally friendly products, products that are not overly packaged, they like recycling, they are concerned that your manufacturing business model is recyclable, and focus on shared and inclusive growth.
Therefore , embracing ESG values and embracing ESG concepts in your production, brand communication, and products will become a very important foundation for building a global brand. If you have problems with ESG, you will almost be rejected by one vote; but if you do well with ESG, consumers are willing to pay a premium of 20% to 30% to buy your products, and ESG brings great value.
2 family crowd
The family group is very important, because its demand is stable and increasing year by year, and its loyalty is very high . Unlike many new consumer groups, it seems to be very popular, but the demand changes too fast, and there is no good foundation.
3 Fans of Gen Z Crowds
Many of our cross-border e-commerce friends today have gradually entered middle-class families from basic products. For example, when making clothing, we used to focus on style and culture, but now we can reflect subcultures; when making 3C electrical appliances, we need to integrate into middle-class families, and we also need to pay attention to design and scenes. We must pay attention to the growth of family groups.
4 silver-haired crowd
The subdivision and in-depth research on the crowd is whether you are engaged in new global brands, cross-border e-commerce, or brands going overseas, the basic skills you need to do are the soil of the brand.
In response to the changes in the population, we also see many new opportunities for brand building , such as brand activism, which is based on consumer values, with the mission of creating a better society, to produce and communicate products, interact with consumers, and spread social media. Value-targeted brand activism. Today, consumers will judge whether you are a brand, and then choose to buy, and then choose long-term purchases, and recommend others to buy. They have to go beyond the basis of cost-effectiveness. If your product quality is not good enough to solve customer problems, there is no basis.
Therefore, on top of satisfying basic functions and excellent quality, what we are pursuing today is a high-value brand . This "high" has three aspects:
It is high performance, because consumers buy products to solve problems and complete tasks, so this is a basis for whether your product has brought efficient problem solving.
2 High reliability
Whether your product can be trusted, this trust will not fall off the chain, timely delivery, no problems, low risk, high security, whether there is trust and reliability, this trust comes from long-term investment in the supply chain, right The investment in logistics delivery, the investment in technological innovation, and the investment in quality bring deep trust.
3 high moving
Can your brand resonate emotionally with consumers, help them inspire ideas, and help them build new relationships? Has your brand helped me lead a better life than I am now? Can it echo me, resonate with me, and allow me to fall in love with my ideal, true self? Is it through stories, videos, content, experiences, co-creation, teams, social?
How to do it? Kotler has a "1262" model under the 5A customer link . We need to build a brand awareness index, a brand interest index, a brand purchasable index to a brand conversion index, and add 6 in-depth operational capabilities to achieve a single product. Or the enhancement of the brand value of a single product line.
“We have to embrace the platform, embrace the data and tool capabilities provided by platforms like Amazon, to build a five-chain integrated brand marketing model with the customer purchase path as the backbone. Only when you and your team have a deep grasp of the relevant Ability to truly achieve success.”
5. Core Concept
To sum up, in the era of digital intelligence, eight core concepts for building a new global brand:
1Brands are more than a result, they are a source of growth
2 Brand building is increasingly dependent on content and operations, not just advertising
3Brands should not only be looked up to, but also become our friends, accompany and form a community
4. Brands must go beyond products, products are an expression and tribute to the dream of great brands, and products and brands must work together
5Brands need to pay attention to social values and become the watchmen of values
6. Brands need to speak out and have warmth, and brands need to be builders of new relationships.Many weak relationships and interest relationships in today's business society are built with the help of brands.
7 Brands don’t belong to companies, they belong to distributed growth of customers
8 Brands should bring new inspiration, new fun and new meaning to consumers, so that our customers can become better themselves through the brand
When a brand achieves this, you show your love for it, pay tribute to it with purchases, recommendations, and repeated premium purchases. Therefore, the core is to find social trends, find the key markets and growth opportunities you are concerned about, and then build a strong brand through digital and intelligent investment and brand investment.
To end today's brief but somewhat informative sharing with a quote from Mr. Kotler. Mr. Kotler said: " Any successful enterprise is not to adapt to the market, but to actively use innovation to create the market, and use brand marketing to realize the connection of customer value. "
The essence of marketing and branding is two words: " altruistic ". Marketers and brand owners spend their entire lives delivering on our brand promise, the value we promise our customers. Therefore, I hope that all friends who are engaged in business work and brand work can continue to learn, constantly update themselves, constantly embrace new platforms, new technologies and new consumers, and continue to deliver the brand promise to customers, to those who love us and people who love us. our loved ones .