Brand consumption in the UAE

The cotemporary world is witnessed by increased advancement in technology as well as in the business arena. Subsequently, these developments have resulted to emergence of various products from different companies that highly compete with each other. To overcome the stiff competition, firms are using diverse marketing techniques to position their products strategically.

Competing firms adapt diverse strategies to differentiate their products in order to differentiate them from substitute products from competing firms. Strategic product positioning helps firms to establish strong brands that are essential in the marketing process.

Companies build their brand through effective differentiation process as well as the use of efficient promotional methods. Strong brands helps firms to increase their sales since a strong brands helps a firm to compete on other factors such distribution channels used rather than on prices alone.

Similarly, strong brands enable firms to sell their products at higher prices than substitute products from weaker brands. They are able to raise their prices above the prices offered by substitute brands because people associate strong brands with good quality.

Literature Review

A brand is a symbol, name, term, design, sign or a combination of two or more of the aforementioned. A brand is used to distinguish products or services of one company from substitute products /services of other companies.

The brand is used to identify the products or services of one seller from similar products from other sellers. Organizations invest a lot of their resources in order to establish strong brands. Strategic branding is very essential since strong brands are very effective in facilitating the sale of a firm’s products/services.

Those companies that manage to strategically position their brands are able to succeed in their business ventures. Conversely, those firms that are not successful in branding appropriately are doomed to fail in their missions. Some firm’s such as Coca Cola, Pepsi, and McDonald as well as Burger king have succeeded in establishing their brands effectively. These firms have managed to excel in their respective ventures.

For instance, Coca Cola and Pepsi are fairing very well in the soft drinks industry. Likewise, the McDonald and Burger King restaurants have performed extremely very well in the restaurant industry, despite the existence of very stiff competition in the restaurant industry. Strong brands are usually associated with good quality.

Therefore, those companies that manage to establish strong brands in their market niche are associated with quality products and services that meet customers’ expectations. Such companies are thus in a better position to market their products and services within their market niche as well as in new markets. Weak brands are often associated with poor quality products and services. Many customers do not prefer buying products or services that are associated with weak brands (Alerck & Settle, 2002).

Strong brands are able to sell their products and services at a higher price than weak brands since their demand is higher than products whose brands are weaker. Subsequently, customers and especially those that are financially well up prefer purchasing products and services that are produced or offered by successful companies that have established their brands effectively.

Such customers choose to buy a product or a service from companies that have strong brands at a higher price than buying a substitute product or service from a weaker brand at a lower price.

Similarly, many customers are comfortable to buy products and services from companies that possess strong brands since they argue that if a company has been successful in establishing a strong brand, it has enough resources to invest in adequate research in order to develop high quality products.

Thus, it is generally perceived that strong brands have better quality products than weaker brands since they have enough resources to invest in thorough research while developing new products. Weaker brands are mainly associated with many emerging companies.

Such companies are known not to have adequate resources at their disposal to carry out very meaningful researches while developing new products. Therefore, it is advisable for people to purchase products from firms that are well established and possess strong brands since they are mostly likely to be of better quality.

Moreover, companies that have succeeded in establishing strong bands are very cautious while introducing new products in the market. They ensure that they subject their inventions under thorough tests in order to a certain their performances. They go over all these processes in order to be in a position to sustain their strong brand that they have invested a lot to establish.

Nevertheless, the cotemporary market has become crowded with similar products from various competing firms. Consequently, consumers find it very difficult to identify genuine products and counterfeited products that are of lower quality. Thus, consumers become more concerned by the brands than the real attributes of the products they intend to purchase.

Therefore, people are less interested by the benefits that accompany such products. Instead they emphasize more on the brand rather than the product attributes. A rational product’s benefit is based on the attributes of the product and should be put into consideration when making a purchase decision. The brand equity is very essential in branding.

Brand equity is the marketing effects that are attributed specifically to the brand. This happens when different results are realized when a product is marketed using different names. Brand equity greatly affects the price perception. It entails what customers think about brands and their implications in the business arena.

Customer-based equity signifies the reactions of clients to marketing mix element for a specific brand in relation to a similar element of marketing mix especially attributed to unknown brand. Consumers based brand equity occurs when the consumers is very familiar with a specific brand and attaches a very strong, unique favorable relations in memory (Henderson, 2000).

In United Arab Emirates people attach a lot of weight to specific brands. Consumers prefer purchasing those products that have established strong brands in relation to those products that are associated with weaker brands. Most households in United Arab Emirates belong to the upper social status. They prefer buying products and services that are produced by multinational companies that have established strong brands.

They buy manufactured products that have attained the status of being referred as luxury goods due to their special designs, durability and performances that are remarkably superior to the ordinary ones. It is evident that virtually every category of products that are present in the market today possesses subset of similar products that are of superior quality that is marked with better quality components and materials.

Therefore, these superior / luxury products improve the basic functionality of these products. Because these luxuries products augment performance of products they are therefore credited to cost more than the ordinary substitute products from less established brands (Noor, 2009). In the united Arabs Emirates, people are classified according to where they buy and which brands they consume.

Thus, most people in the United Arabs Emirates consider consuming those products that are taken as being luxuries goods. These products play the role of status symbol and signify that those people that are able to consume such brands are rich and are thus highly respected by the general public.

These products are necessarily not better in quality than other less expensive substitute products, but people opt to consume them for symbolic reasons. People in the United Arabs Emirates consume luxuries products from strong brands to show off their wealth, but not because they are of better qualities.

These products are often comprised of products such as luxury cars, watches, yacht as well as jewelries and designer clothing (Wong & Ahuvia, 1998). Marketers in the United Arab Emirates have realized the effects of raising the prices of some of their products such as perfumes in order to make them more expensive in an effort to be perceived as more valuable and thus increase their sales.

The United Arab Emirates are associated with luxuries brands. A luxury brand is considered as that brand whose name is associated with luxury, high quality, high price although they are not many since it is only few people who can afford them.

Luxuries brands are attributed by big profit margins and are tightly regulated to avoid the market being saturated. Examples of some of luxuries brands that are present in the United Arabs Emirates include the Gucci brand, Louis Vuitton Hennessy as well as the LVMH and Richermont (Chhatlani, 2011).

Method

The study used both primary and secondary research. The secondary research entailed a review of articles, journals and books that contained information about consumer branding especially the consumption of brands in United Arabs Emirates. Conversely, the primary research consisted of a survey that involved sampling of targeted groups.

The researcher sampled 50 respondents who were people that were living in United Arabs Emirates. The researcher used questionnaires as the preferred instrument for collecting the required data (Aaker & Kumar, 1998).

The questionnaires contained both closed ended questions that limited the respondents to specific answers as well as open ended questions that helped the researcher to identify new insight in the research that he/she could have overlooked. The researcher distributed the questionnaires to the 50 people sampled which they filled with the required data.

The researcher analyzed the collected data with the help of SPSS and excels programs to infer require inference. The research findings indicated that more than 75% of those people that were interviewed preferred buying their products and services from firms that had strong brands.

Similarly, more than 65% of those people that were interviewed indicated that they consider the strength of the brand of the products they aspire to buy more than the attributes benefits of the products they are buying. 70% of the respondents indicated that they buy their products from multinational enterprises such as LVMH and Richermont.

Conclusion

Both the secondary and primary research indicated that the brand is very essential in the marketing process. Strong brands are attributed with quality products/services, while weaker brands are linked with low quality products/services. Some people prefer to buy luxury brands because of social status associated with them. Most people in the United Arab Emirates prefer to purchase luxury brands in order to show off their wealth.

Reference List

Aaker, D. & Kumar, D. (1998).Marketing Research. New York. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Alerck, P.L. & Settle R.B. (2002).Strategies Building Consumer Brand Preference.

Journal of Product and Brand Management, 8, (2).

Chhatlani, J. (2011). Global Luxury Brands. Retrieved 25, November, 2011 from
http://www.synovate.com/news/article/2009/12/global-luxury-brands-survey-sone-

Henderson, C. (2000). Strategic Branding in the 21st Century. Retrieved 25 November, 2011 from
http://www.asiamarketresearch.com/columns/market3.htm

Noor, K. (2009).How does Brand affects consumer price perception. Retrieved 25 November, 2011 from
http://www.sooperarticles.com/business-articles/branding-articles/how-does-brand-affects-consumer-price-perception-416.html

Wong, N. Y., & Ahuvia, A. C. (1998). Personal taste and family face: Luxury consumption in Confucian and Western societies. Psychology & Marketing, 15(5), 423-441.

Appendix 1

Abstract of Sources

Aaker, D. & Kumar, D. (1998).Marketing Research. New York. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Aaker and Kumar discuss the various research methodologies that are adapted by firms while conducting a market research. They explain the various strategies that one can opt to take while conducting a market research. In addition, they elaborate on the various instruments and sampling strategies that are appropriate in various situations.

Alerck, P.L. & Settle R.B. (2002).Strategies Building Consumer Brand Preference.

Journal of Product and Brand Management, 8, (2).

The authors discusses on the various strategies that one can adapt while branding. They also explain the importance of strategic branding process. The article discusses how a firm can establish a strong brand and use it as a competitive edge.

Chhatlani, J. (2011). Global Luxury Brands. Retrieved 25, November, 2011 from
http://www.synovate.com/news/article/2009/12/global-luxury-brands-survey-sone-

The author explains the meaning of the term luxury brand. The author also explains why some people opt to buy luxury brands despite their high pricing.

Henderson, C. (2000). Strategic Branding in the 21st Century. Retrieved 25 November, 2011 from
http://www.asiamarketresearch.com/columns/market3.htm

The author discusses on how various firms can be able to differentiate their products/services through appropriate branding.

Noor, K. (2009).How does Brand affects consumer price perception. Retrieved 25 November, 2011 from
http://www.sooperarticles.com/business-articles/branding-articles/how-does-brand-affects-consumer-price-perception-416.html

The author explains how the strength of a brand relates to price. He depicts that strong brands are often related with good quality and that is the reason why they charge their products and services at a higher price. On the other hand, he relates weaker brands with inferior quality which habits them from charging high prices for their services or products.

Wong, N. Y., & Ahuvia, A. C. (1998). Personal taste and family face: Luxury consumption in Confucian and Western societies. Psychology & Marketing, 15(5), 423-441.

The authors explain how rich families appreciates buying luxury brands in order to show off. He explains that the high pricing of luxury products does not necessarily reflect their superb quality, but is a sign of prestige.