Not all that long ago, private label branding usually floundered as national brands had a near-unbreakable grip on the market. On the other hand, the public had a way of snubbing private labels. Though they were less expensive than name-brand alternatives, they’d developed a reputation over the decades for being cheap in more ways than one.
These days, though, private labels are coming into their own. With the right measures in place, they have the capacity to stand up against even the most popular nationally and globally recognized names.
Private Label Branding Is Gaining Steam
According to collaborative reports from the Private Label Manufacturers Association and data metrics firm, Nielsen, private label unit sales surged more than 10 percent last year alone. In terms of dollars, they rose well over 9 percent. Analysts are expecting these figures to continue on an upward trend during the years to come.
How Smaller Brands Can Cash in on This Movement
While consumers are increasingly veering away from big-name brands, they still have high expectations of the products they’re buying. As is so often the case these days, though, piquing their interest and holding their attention has very little to do with the products themselves.
Consumers are looking at the bigger picture, so today’s brands have to do the same in order to find success. It’s a matter of delivering quality and value while also having the right private label branding strategy in place to set yourself apart.
Find Your Differentiating Factor
In all likelihood, you already have a product in mind to market to the masses. Chances are you’re also up against stiff competition from other brands offering the same type of merchandise. You’ll have to find a way to distinguish yourself from all the others to truly impress the public.
This aspect varies widely depending on a number of factors, but certain universal elements are apt to sway your target audience. Environmentally sound practices and sustainability are among the most notable ones. Seeking out and filling an underserved niche in the market also tends to be a significant driving force. Incorporate these into your business model as well as your marketing approach, and you’re sure to stand out.
Align Your Image
Whether you’re expanding your brand with a new product or building a new brand around a specific item, you’ll need to create a sense of consistency. Brand name, logo, color scheme and packaging all fall into this category, but they’re not alone. Consider your company’s image, differentiating factors, target audience, and customer persona when aligning your brand and product labeling.
All these considerations will go a long way toward fostering trust among consumers and boosting brand recognition. It’ll also give you a strong foundation to build upon later on as you branch out in other directions.
Take It One Step at a Time
Some companies see the concept of private labeling as a chance to break into a wide range of niches, and they seize every possible opportunity to do so. This rarely ends well. Start off with a single product on which to focus your time, energy and budget. Figure out which packaging, advertising, and marketing tactics work for that one. Don’t begin to expand further until after you’ve perfected the initial effort.
Cultivate Your CX
Connecting with your customers on multiple levels is the key to excelling in your niche and outshining the competition. All those other components play into this single, broader facet. Understand what consumers want from the types of products you offer and what they expect from the companies they choose to do business with.
From meeting needs no one else in the market has addressed to ensuring your packaging, ads, website, social media outlets, and customer service team continually reflect the image your company wants to convey to customers, it’s all about the complete customer experience. If you don’t follow through on all channels, you’re setting yourself up for failure.
All Things Considered
Public mindset is certainly changing when it comes to “off-brand” products. Private labels are still falling somewhat behind more widespread competitors in terms of sales, but they may not be for long. At this point, many private labels offer quality equaling or even surpassing that of major name brands, and consumers are beginning to realize this.
Consumers are leaning more toward unique value and overall experience when choosing products and services. While they’re becoming more aware of private labels’ ability to meet their expectations, convincing them which products are more deserving of their attention than their big-name counterparts isn’t always easy.
Standing out in a sea of competition, no matter how well-known those other names may be, is entirely possible, though, with the right private label branding approach. Distinguish yourself in your chosen niche. Create a clear, consistent and candid image across every aspect of your company and products. Take the time to perfect one product and marketing plan before moving on to others.
It’s all about one main focus for Private Label Branding
Above all else, be sure everything you do revolves around heightening the customer experience. With all these aspects in place, you’ll be set to become a major player in the continually growing private label branding movement.