Is Branding Ethical or Responsible Essay example

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Assess the issues about branding raised in this unit in the light of ethical or responsible design.

     We are all branded ourselves to a certain degree, we announce ourselves through the clothes we wear, the products we buy and the car we drive, but why? The aim of this essay is to discuss how branding effects us a consumer society, what makes us remember particular brands and what moral issues are raised by the over use of brands.
      A brand was originally a mark on a product to identify who made it or owned it (cattle were branded so others knew who they belonged to if they got lost or stolen). An older definition of a brand is: -

“(a brand name is) a name, term, sign, symbol or
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     A brand is: -
“A business strategy to encourage us to consume one product over its competitors, and it is sign loaded with meaning that we choose to consume because we feel we relate to it”
Branding can be said to be a philosophy of life symbolised in a logo, brands have been adapted to portray certain characteristics depending on the type of product it is promoting, this enables the consumer to form a connection with it as is it were a friend. For example luxury items such as fast cars and expensive clothing connote wealth and taste so the people who want to visually establish their status to the world that they have an affluent lifestyle choose cars such as Mercedes-Benz or BMW and will buy clothes from Gucci or Prada because these companies brand themselves as top of the range luxurious items that command premium prices. Items bought by people who want nothing but the best for themselves.
It was in the 1980’s when advertising for lifestyle inundated the market, they focused on selling a lifestyle rather than actual product. A prime example of this type of product/lifestyle branding can be seen in the Gold Blend television adverts for coffee, the focus was on the life of the woman, the story behind it, it kept you thinking - where will she be next time?, will he ask her to marry him? will she say yes?. It was a story, people became familiar with the characters and with this familiarity people trust the product and its values.

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