Labels: A Key to Proper Branding
January 13, 2015 at 5:23 AM
In a marketplace where competitors from around the world may be chasing the same dollar your company is after, names matter.
When large corporations buy out other companies, they don’t just make the move to acquire those companies’ facilities and personnel. The name and reputation of those companies also plays a critical role in the decision to buy. Companies with a well-established brand and positive reputation enjoy an important advantage, as all other things being equal, customers are more likely to do business with a company when they know that company’s name.
Labels are an important part of a company’s branding efforts. Labels provide a recognizable, immediate identifier of a product or company. They can provide critical safety information, or even information you’re required by law to divulge. They also often make the first and only impression a consumer will have of your product or company, so making sure you have great labels is critical.
Why Branding is Important
The answer seems obvious, but many businesses fail to realize the need to create a distinctive brand for their companies and products.
Your brand essentially is your pledge to your customer concerning what they can expect from your company’s products and services and how they are different than your competitors. Your brand reflects the identity of your company and its goals and aspirations.
Good branding strategies help create strong brand equity, which allows you to charge a premium for the perceived added value that your company brings to the table. For example, major athletic shoe companies like Nike can ask – and receive – higher prices for their products than unbranded shoe companies because of the perceived value of their products established by Nike’s strong brand name.
To establish a strong brand, companies need to figure out:
- The mission of the company
- The value of the company’s products and services
- Current public perception of the company
- Desired public perception of the company
Once you’ve decided what your brand should be, you can begin designing labels that will get the message you want to proclaim across to consumers.
How Labels Assist Customers
In addition to marketing a brand, labels provide important information to customers. Some of the information relayed by a good label includes:
- Product identification – A well-designed label will immediately identify the product and its manufacturer for consumers. Attractive labels will help to create positive impressions of the product and the brand.
- Product grading – Many labels will establish a grade for the product. Products of differing quality, sizes, etc. can be identified by grades such as A, B, C, or D or 1, 2, 3, or 4.
- Product description – Labels can provide a basic introduction to the product, describing its purposes and proper use. In some cases, certain information on labels are required by law or due diligence.
- Brand promotion – By tying a popular product to its maker, labels can help encourage customers to seek out other quality products made by that company.
- Customer protection – Labels that list maximum selling price, quantity, and quality help protect customers from unfair practices such as price gouging or counterfeiting by middlemen.
Elements of a Good Label
To create a label that promotes your brand and serves customers, think about the following elements when designing labels for your products:
- Consider the product – Take into consideration the size of your product, its packaging, and other details such as label size, coloring, materials, etc. Labels that are poor fits for their products can be counterproductive to building your brand.
- Consider the environment – If your product operates in harsh environments, it’s important to design labels that can handle extremes of heat or cold, harsh chemicals, or other environmental hazards. Peeled or decayed labels are unattractive and may leave a negative impression. Metal or other robust labels may be necessary.
- Consider the purpose – What are you trying to say with your label? Are you just getting your company’s name out there, or do you need to convey other important information like pricing or safety warnings or directions?
- Keep it simple – Practice an economy of words and images with your labels. Say the most with the least. A busy, crowded label will be a turn-off to your customers. Keep labels brief and to the point.
Southern Coating & Nameplate
Southern Coating & Nameplate has a reputation for excellence in the printing and labeling industry. The company is a 3M Preferred Converter and also obtained ISO certification in 2012. Southern Coating & Nameplate is a UL Registered Label Manufacturer and the company also meets all standards for Restriction of Hazardous Substances and North American Free Trade Agreement Compliance.
For companies seeking an experienced printing and labeling company to help them design and manufacture quality labels, Southern Coating & Nameplate is an excellent choice. The company can help clients with a variety of label products, including:
- Pressure sensitive labels - Vinyl, polyester, polystyrene that adhere to the client’s product.
- Metal nameplates - Aluminum, steel, brass, or other metal nameplates that can be printed, embossed or stamped with important information.
- Domed labels – Three-dimensional labels that add a tactile element to labels.
- UID - Unique Identifier labels are labels that identify specific products by bar codes or QR tags.
- Injection molded tags – Specially designed 3-D tags that are custom designed for specific parts and products.
- Graphic overlays – Labels that fit over control boards and provide directions or information.
Brand names can help companies make their products recognizable in a crowded marketplace and also add value to their products. Good labeling provides a firm foundation for brand building. By working with a professional printing and labeling company like Southern Coating & Nameplate, companies can ensure their labels are well-designed and effective. For labels that work, contact Southern Coating & Nameplate today to begin more effectively branding your products and services.
Photo credit: http://scninc.com/products/pressure-sensitive-labels/