Careers in Brand Management
With the floodgates of the Indian market being opened due to liberalisation, the Indian customers have a large number of choices because a bevy of foreign companies have started wooing them in order to promote their products. These products include a wide range of electronic goods for household use to automobiles to cosmetics to clothes and so on. To come up trumps in this fierce competition, the price and quality of the products are of utmost importance. But the big questions is - what should be the right price and which segment of the consumer should be targeted? Welcome to the most fascinating but intriguing world of brand management.
The branding process begins with the evolution of a new product together with a comprehensive plan to make it an integral part of a consumer's life. But before the process begins, a market survey is conducted to assess the consumer sentiments. The next step is to assert the brand identify by telling consumers as to how the brand (product) is going to fulfill their needs. The whole process is rounded off by aggressively promoting and campaigning with the use of various media forums and otherwise, to create an awareness among the consumers.
"Brand management is all about refining and dressing up a particular product so that it finds a permanent place in the consumer's mind", says Sohini Gupta, Accounts Director, Bates India. The genesis of any brand lies in the identification of a "selling idea". The advertising agency assists the company in connecting to the consumers with the help of images and symbols. Brand management is also about delivering various strategies and techniques necessary to sustain the product.
To become a brand manager, you should preferably have an MBA degree with specialisation in marketing. But, you cannot become a brand manager overnight. People generally begin as a part of the sales team. After a sustained good performance for two to three years in the core sales unit team of an organisation, only the best and the brightest are promoted to assistant brand/ product manager and ultimately to brand manager. The competition is so tough that from a team of about ten people, only a couple make it to brand manager.
The job of a brand manager essentially revolves around effective co-ordination with the other departments and beyond. In addition to co-ordination, the brand manager is also responsible for support to the sales teams, dividing the overall brand strategy and budgeting. In fact, he is the person responsible for flawless functioning of activities such as formulation, productions, packaging and distribution. Further, a brand manager needs to be aware of the trends in the market, must know the effective art of man management and should also be receptive to new ideas. The key to success as a brand manager is practical thinking and always being on the toes.
This is one of the most challenging professions where scope of stagnation is almost nil. To be in the profession you have to learn new things on a regular basis. Moreover, the co-ordination work keeps the brand manager in constant touch with almost every department thus giving him the feel of the whole organisation.
The remuneration of brand managers varies from organisation to organisation and generally depends upon the experience of person and the company itself. Freshers can earn anywhere between Rs. 10,000 and Rs. 15,000, whereas those with a couple of years of experience in person and the company itself. Freshers can earn anywhere between Rs. 10,000 and Rs. 15,000, whereas those with a couple of years of experience in FMCG industry can earn between Rs. 25,000 to Rs. 30,000. As the markets in India have become very competitive, the establishment of brands has become extremely important. As a result, the need for brand managers is more than ever before.
- Indian Institute of Management - Kolkata, Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Lucknow and Indore.
- Indian Institute of Science and Management - Pundag, Ranchi - 834004.
- Symbiosis Institute of Management Studies - 15th Lane, Prabhat Road, Pune - 411004.
- SP Jain Institute of Management and Research - Munshi Nagar, Dadabhai Road, Andheri (West), Mumbai - 400058.
- Xavier Institute of Management and Enterpreneurship - Seva Sadan Campus, 3rd Block, Koramangala, Bangalore - 560034.
- Institute of Management Bhubaneswar - Gyan Vihar, Rasulgarh, Bhubaneswar - 751010
- MP Birla Institute of Management - 43, Race Course Road, Bangalore - 560001.
- Indian Institute of Planning and Management - IIPM Tower, C - 10, Qutab Institutional Area, New Delhi - 110016.
- Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management - Management House, College Square(West), Kolkata - 700073.
- Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan - Block FA, Sector III, Salt Lake, Kolkata - 700097, and 77, Ashutosh Mukherjee Road, Kolkata - 700025.