Page 1: Introduction
In a few years, British Sky Broadcasting has transformed the way people in Britain watch and use their television. Before Sky, people could never have imagined ordering a pizza or sending an email from their set. Today it’s an accepted thing.
Part of Sky’s success has been in its brand - in defining what makes Sky special and in expressing that difference visually, in products and in the actions of people in the company. And that brand has become one of the company’s greatest assets. Brands help companies build a relationship with a customer. A good brand not only helps differentiate a company, it also helps the customer feel something as a result. A pair of Nike trainers might make a person feel more fashionable. A Sony minidisc player might make a person feel they are at the cutting edge of miniature technology. A Rolls Royce might make a person feel that they have reached the top.
Some brands even go beyond that and become so well known that they become generic. This means they’re used as a general term for that type of product, even if it’s a competitor’s product. Walkmans and Hoovers are a good example. People Hoover the carpet, even if they’re really using an Electrolux.
A brand helps customer recognition and enables recognition to be spread by word of mouth as well as by advertising. A brand also adds value. It can allow a company to offer its products at a premium, without reducing the customers’ perception of value for money. It also allows a company to extend what they offer to the customer - if a customer trusts one product from that company, they are more likely to trust (and buy) another product from the same company.
That is why Sky has invested so much in its brand. As the first entrant 11 years ago in the field of multichannel television, it had the opportunity to build strong recognition and to even establish itself as the generic brand for multichannel television.