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Warren Buffet and why good branding makes low prices irrelevant.

Warren Buffett, worlds’ best investor and billionaire chief executive officer of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., said he rates businesses on their ability to raise prices and sometimes doesn’t even consider the people in charge.

“The single most important decision in evaluating a business is pricing power. If you’ve got the power to raise prices without losing business to a competitor, you’ve got a very good business. And if you have to have a prayer session before raising the price by 10 percent, then you’ve got a terrible business.”

Buffett, 80, accumulated the world’s third-largest personal fortune through a career of stock picks and takeovers. He has bought companies such as railroads and electricity producers, whose pricing power stems from a dearth of competitive options available to clients. Buffett has also built stakes in firms like Coca-Cola Co. and Kraft Foods Inc., which rely on the appeal of their brands to attract and keep customers.”

Buffett said in the interview. Quoted from Bloomberg

During my 20 year branding career, I have attended many meetings and joined several boardrooms where the discussion of lower prices was at the top of the agenda. It seems that top management is getting really uneasy when it comes to pricing a product. The reason being of course the un-originality of the actual products in discussion. However, what many managers don’t know is that companies with commodity products or low innovation technologies, have the opportunity of strengthening their pricing power through branding.

Why?
Because branding is the art of innovating product essence and appeal, beyond true originality and technological innovation.

Interestingly enough emerging economies have always entered market places with low quality, low price products. Yet, it was only when companies seriously invested in branding and product innovation that they market share really took off.

Exporting companies have learned this the hard way. Especially when it comes to exporting products to mature markets such as Europe and the US, serious investment and commitment to an original branding growth strategy is the most essential decision influencing success. Sure you might be sending tonnes of this or the other product, but soon you will discover that your aren’t really building any market share, until the market place recognizes and esteems your brand.

If you plan to be the next Japanese Toyota, Korean Samsung or Brazilian Havaianas, invest in innovative technologies, yet embraced by serious branding strategies.

www.toyota-global.com
gsg.samsung.com
www.havaianas.com

Michael JA Tupay
mtupay@yalosbranding.com

145 Comments


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