Product Management vs Brand Management - Which One Is Best

Product Management vs Brand Management –

I can say product management vs Brand Management as the two parts of the same coin, both sides are different, functions in the same format but have a degree of difference.

When a company makes its products and services attached to its audience is branding and how the product reaches the customers and generates value for them is product management.

Peter Economides espoused deeply on the brand management as an idea or a concept that’s communicated in the way it creates a certain mindset among the customers.

In short, it forms an impression as per the management’s perception. And each touch point is a way or process to interact with the customer.

These touch points relate to everything about the company, what activities it is performing and what makes the company or its product different than its counterparts.

According to Peter, “the product is a fundamental touch point in the delivery of perception and the promise set at a business strategy level”.

In the product development process, product managers focus on how the product meets the company’s positioning and how it delivers the brand.

It makes sure that their offer holds the value of the company and experiences the customers’ needs.

Product Management vs Brand Management Infographics:

product management vs brand management

Product Management vs Brand Management Infographics

Here are some points on Product Management vs Brand Management

Behind every successful product is a hand of a product manager while to sustain the success of a product is a role of a Brand Manager.

A success of any product or service of company’s prolific venture or services lay in the hand of a product manager.

It is this person who is responsible for making the product a success. He conceptualizes the product to make it suitable for the right audience and at the right time, this means he sees that product has all the features that make it conducive for the people the company is targeting.

The product management has a capability to understand the needs of the customers and then to come up with the compelling product definition.

This process comes through by having a deeper insight into the prevailing conditions, the capability to make the judgment and make the right choices.

Then product manager prepares the strategy and a roadmap bringing out ideas on how to generate value from the product and see how the enhancement of the product generates value in future.

The product management strategies also help sales and marketing team in making the value of the products and services known to the potential customers and generate the market for the products.

We can say a brand manager is one who builds the brand positioning and keep the success of the brand sustained for many years altogether.

It is about cultivating the consistency of the brand that comes up with efforts in generating the presence felt.

For example, Coca-Cola was started many years back but still, it is a most preferred drink among the people all over the world as the company was able to make its presence felt with its quality standard and making it a most cherished drink.

Now Coca-Cola is making its “One Brand” strategy all over the globe for all its drinks entitled “Taste the Feeling” strapline.

It is linking the brand with the feeling of love, friendship, unity and brotherhood that comes with Coca-Cola taste as reported by Thomas Hobbes in Marketing Week.

James Heaton explains, “Getting your brand right internally is actually the key to getting it right out in the world”. (Source: Tronvig Group).

This means a brand manager aligns his brand strategy with an organizational goal and builds awareness and consensus on the strategy formulated. This ensures what your brand is promising you are delivering.

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A strategy is at play in Branding while Tactics are employed in Product Management (Product Management vs Brand Management)

We can also say product managing as a marketing involving tactics to lure the customers to buy their products or services.

It is pressing the products or services into the market for customers to see, touch, feel and ultimately buy as for instance we hear the salesman saying, “Our product will boost your energy as no other product can do.”

Here the marketing tactics are being employed to emphasize the products, features, specifications and how the product can be beneficial to the customers.

In product, managing trends are analyzed, and taste and preference of the consumers are understood, before getting the product in the market, while branding encompasses a much bigger picture.

It is a brand that remains stick in the minds of the people when all the marketing efforts are over.

Proper strategies are developed to explain to the customers your stand, promises and the personality you are emphasizing.

It is not limited to only your logo, slogan, colour palette that conveys your message but it lives in your day to day interaction that you have with the market.

  • The images that you are trying to project
  • The messages you are delivering through your website, campaigns, and websites
  • The interactions or relationship you have developed with your customers
  • The opinion that the customer has built into your brand.

Branding Makes Loyal Customers while Product Management generates the prospective market (Product Management vs Brand Management)

All the organizations whether they are profit oriented or non-profitable, they sell, but the way they sell depends on what they want to achieve, their goals and aspirations.

Thoroughly researched, and planned product management activities generate the market for the products and services and people would find them near their homes or work areas.

And on the other hand, each thought process, action, policy, marketing campaign, can either inspire and generate lifelong loyalty or deter the brand’s loyalty which could have a severe impact on sales.

To get a considerable market share, companies should begin with a strong brand positioning or a strategy.

There might be a feeling you do not have a great B2B brand but by placing two companies against each other, the one that reflects something of value would have easy reaching, closing, retaining and engaging customers.

For generating loyal customers, companies perform more than mere advertising, they attract customers with free gifts and incentives and generate an environment that makes customers as a part of their brand.

Brand loyalty means generating trust, loyalty, value, commitment and repeats purchases and it is generated as your customers know what exactly what you are offering to them in terms of services and product satisfaction.

And it is also easy to start a dialogue with the new prospects as now they are acquainted with your offerings and you also know what the quality standards you are maintaining and whether you are building a loyal customer or not?

Branding is both present and future-oriented while Product Management keeps the business running (Product Management vs Brand Management)

While both the branding and product management are designed to keep the present and future goal in mind but the difference lies in the way goals are oriented towards getting customer’s attraction.

In product management, the goal is to generate the business value from the product and to get good returns on their investment.

A product manager frames the goals of the business, for example, whether to enter a new market or not, how to save cost, create the brand and generate revenue.

He describes a financial framework of a product and deciphers the way a business model should operate.

A financial forecast is also formulated to analyse when a break-even might occur or what would be the right time for the product to launch in the market and the service to be inaugurated and how their proposition can become a profitable venture.

The main focus is on keeping short goals in mind while generating a sustainable business.

However, we can say branding is more oriented towards an emotional side. A Brand manager touches the emotional chord of the potential customers so that they could immediately feel related towards the brand of the product or services they are offering.

Once the customer is emotionally attached he or she would sustain forever towards the brand, for instance, if a customer has started buying a branded Tata tea, he would always prefer the same tea as it had generated a special taste and flavour and had been projected as a household name.

Note: Become a Brand Manager
Learn how to manage brands effectively. Develop effective marketing campaigns and plans. Provide direction and leadership to the marketing team.

Branding Generates Brand Equity while Product Management Generates usefulness and value (Product Management vs Brand Management)

If branding did strategically it generates brand equity, this means the amount of money that customers are intending to pay only because it is your brand.

Besides, brand equity makes company valuable in the long run. Getting the brand connected to the equity and assets literally changes the function of the marketing and allows the company to expand beyond strategies.

Brand equity revolves around four main concepts: brand loyalty, brand associations, awareness and quality with each generating a value for a firm in many ways.

Once a brand has identified its value of equity than a brand equity roadmap can be drafted to manage the value that can be generated from the same.

However we say that brand equity implies emotional connection but can it still be measured, and there are certain attributes that make the brand measured as suggested by Brad Vanauken:

  • “Unaided awareness
  • Relevance
  • Importance of up to 24 brand benefits and values
  • Delivery against those 24 brand benefits and values
  • Brand value
  • Brand accessibility
  • The brand’s emotional connection to its customers (4 different measures of this)
  • Attitudinal loyalty to the brand (2 different measures)
  • Brand vitality (2 different measures)
  • Brand personality
  • Top-of-mind brand associations

While a product Manager is a product evangelist whose pertinent role lies in championing about the product and explaining about its vision and benefits through different means like through customer feedback, sales meeting, company newsletter, generating slides and preparing presentations.

The best product manager ensures that whatever he is projecting is well understood by the people around and generates usability of the product and services across the masses.

Finally, a product manager can be a brand manager but a brand manager may or may not be a product manager.

A product manager needs to understand and have a gist of their brand and ensure that all the components which they are delivering to their customers are as per the organisational goals and fulfils what the brand has promised.

It is a duty of a product manager to have their company’s brand come to life and they can then have the capability to understand their brand completely well.

They need to find out the different ways to connect to the brand and become the promoter of the brand and generate the truth of the brand in everything that the brand is about.

However, a brand manager narrates the story of the brand as it is an abstract thing.

Let us take an example of a Nike brand, which claims for its “authenticity, athletic performance”, which can also be true for Adidas or Puma but what makes Nike different when it shows of itself as a brand DNA and which is its value proposition.

Nike has a deep association with the consumers depending on such considerations as innovative designs, sponsorship of top athletes, award-winning advertising and innovative product designs, as found by Kevin Lane Keller in his Strategic Brand Management.

We can also say about Coca-Cola which is a same kind of drink as Thumbs Up but when it says “Taste The Feeling”, it becomes unique to the way it is packed, demonstrated and introduced shows how it’s best and different than other nonalcoholic brands and why people should prefer drinking it.

Many people are aware of the story of Apple, which happened to be one of the greatest stories ever told about a brand.

When Steve Jobs took the reins in 1997, he did the one thing, at the launch of the internet, he said, “marketing is about values… and to really define who we are, what we’re about and where we fit in the world…(we) needed to (re)define the brand”.

And “People with Passion Change the World”, became a moto which was successfully showed in their brand advertising, “Think different”, this what made Apple made their customers think about making their lives smarter by their new smart iPhones and tablets.

What made it interesting and strange was that brand came first and products later. (Source Forbes Magazine)

Brand and Product management is conducive to each other and brand positioning can only do effectively if product management is generated strategically and successfully.

Every product is a kind of touch point that communicates and every brand manager speaks of what the product that communicates.

In short, we can also brand and product management goes in conjunction with each other and has to be strategically implemented to make a product and services of the company a success.

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