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An illustration showing various device sizes by the same brand, such as an iphone, ipad, laptop, and desktop. Each device has the same color scheme showing on the screen. Blog post on product branding.

Product Branding Defined: Strategies and Examples

TJ Kiely

Nov 10, 2023

Some products are just as recognizable as the companies that create them. For example, there’s no mistaking a bottle of soda with a red label and white scripted font for anything other than a Coca-Cola. Or if you happen to hear the words “You’re not you when you’re hungry” over the radio, you know instantly they’re talking about a Snickers bar.

These are basic examples of product branding — the face and brand personality given to individual products.

In general terms, branding is the act of identifying a product in the market in a way that separates it from any other product. The stronger the brand strategy, the more that product will stand out.

You don’t have to be on the level of Coca-Cola or Snickers to take advantage of good product branding. Here’s how you can build a solid product branding strategy that gets noticed.


What is Product Branding?

What is product branding, exactly? Let’s start with a product branding definition.

Product branding is the development of a distinctive brand for a given product with the intention to reach a brand's target consumers.

Everything from household cleaners to candy to cars can have its own brand positioning and marketing strategy. Regardless of the product, the idea remains the same: to stand out in a sea of similar products and give people a reason to choose yours.

Just like a company builds a corporate brand to earn customer loyalty, products can benefit from brand building to create trust and increase sales. Your product is a brand extension of your company, so when you get product branding right, your company gets a boost too. 

How Does Product Branding Differ from Corporate Branding?

The purest form of brand marketing is a standalone product. It uses the name of the corporation in its branding — the two are one and the same. It’s when companies have more than one product or brand that things get more complicated.

Take Mars, for example. The company makes a range of products, including M&Ms, Skittles, and even Whiskas cat food. The company's brand positioning focuses more on innovation and being a long-standing leader in its field, while its product brands each have their own unique brand identity.

Corporate branding is much broader and encompasses the entire company and all of its products. This is what you use on your corporate website and marketing.

Product brands are more nuanced and tailored to an individual product. The goal is to differentiate a product in its niche.

Some companies choose to create a brand family, where all the products share the name of the company even though they’re different. Campbell’s is a great example of a brand family with its diverse line of soups all under the Campbell’s name. The company has also expanded into a multi-brand company with its line of Campbell’s Chunky, Well Yes!, Slow Kettle Style, and Homestyle soups.

A screenshot of a six types of soups offered on Campbell's website. The soups each come in different packaging and have different product branding.

But for companies that sell a diverse product line, such as diapers and cleaning products, using a single brand or a brand family could prove tricky. That’s why companies like Procter & Gamble, for example, opt for individual product brands.

Product brands often tie back to the corporate brand in some way. But the key difference is that product brands have visuals and personality traits that are separate from the company that makes them.

Why Is Product Branding Important?

Brand recognition with a product provides a number of benefits to a company, even if customers don’t immediately associate your product with your corporate brand.

Let's review four of the benefits of distinctive product branding:


As with any type of branding, branding a product makes it easier to identify among lookalike products. A strong brand stands out. The more recognizable it becomes, the more ROI you can get from your advertising and marketing. Think about the last time you went shopping and you found yourself looking for the distinctive color of the product you were hunting for, like the turquoise on the lid of Skippy's peanut butter, rather than the brand name itself to locate the product. This resource gives you insight into some marketing agencies successful branding ideas.


Having a brand people already know and love can make it easier to expand into a new market or product category, or even introduce a new brand from the same company. It builds instant credibility for new products and encourages people to try them.

Dollar Shave Club products.

For example, Dollar Shave Club started with just razors and shave butter. Then in 2015, it expanded its product line to include hair care. Having built its credibility as a reputable personal care brand, the company was able to seamlessly expand its brand.

Product preference

Brand awareness carries a lot of weight when it comes to consumer preference. People buy the brands they know and trust. When you create an intentional brand that’s consistent and appeals to your target audience, you stand a better chance of winning them over. 


Part of a good brand strategy means paying attention to other brands in your market. Strong brands can discourage other companies from entering your niche. It creates a higher barrier to entry, especially if people show a strong affinity for your brand over others.

Good product branding also means you have to compete less on price. People are willing to pay more for the brands they like, especially if they think that run-of-the-mill products might also be of lesser quality.

How to Build a Better Product Branding Strategy

Product branding is the intersection of many moving parts, including logo, colors, package design, product names and descriptions, brand voice, brand values, brand story, and the general messaging used by the brand. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts — a sum that is calculated strategically.

Ready to develop your product branding strategy?

Here are our top product branding tips for success:

Research your audience

Every new branding strategy starts with market research. You need to decide who you want to buy your product, then work backward to create a brand that resonates with them.

Some questions to ask during this process might include:

  • What is the purpose of the product?
  • Who would use the product?
  • Why would they use this product and not one from a competitor?
  • Why do I want to serve this audience?
  • What does this audience value?

Getting consumer insights is invaluable to your brand development because it puts you in the shoes of the people to whom you want to market. Conduct surveys or access data to uncover real pain points consumers experience and see how you can solve them with a great product and strong brand.

Learn more about consumer insights in our blogs: How to Do Customer Profiling, What is Customer Intelligence, and Top Customer Insights Tools

Know your competition

Part of good branding hinges on your ability to stand out. To do this, marketers first need to know who else is fighting for visibility. Do some competitor research to understand current branding trends. Find out how customers feel about those brands and what might make them switch to yours (e.g. better pricing, higher quantities, product quality, etc.). These will serve as some of the building blocks to your product branding strategy.

Related resources: Competitor Monitoring Ultimate Guide, Competitive Intelligence Guide, Creating a Competitive Intelligence Database

Define Your Product’s Personality

If your branded products could speak, what would they say? What would they sound like? Smell like? Feel like?

Branding is a collective of visuals, sounds, smells, textures, and associations. Defining your brand’s personality can help to inform choices like logos, colors, packaging, and other details that consumers will rely on to identify your brand.

Share your brand identity

Once you understand how your product brand should look and function, you can start sharing its story with your audience. Talk about its history, its values, and what makes it unique. Help the audience feel connected to your brand so they can build familiarity. In other words, give people a reason to choose it over others.

Be consistent in your product branding

No matter how you approach a product branding strategy, the single common denominator is always consistency. Make a style guide that details how your brand should be presented.

Common things a brand style guide should include are:

  • Size
  • Placement
  • Color palette
  • Core values
  • Imagery
  • Brand voice

This same style should be consistent throughout your e-commerce presence, your customer service for that product, your business cards, and every marketplace where the product is sold.

Reflect your brand’s identity in all of your marketing and advertising. The more consistent you are, the more eye-catching and memorable your brand becomes. Plus, the less time it takes for people to feel connected to your brand.

Examples of Product Branding Done Right

Need some inspiration for your next product branding exercise? Check out these high-impact product branding examples.


The homepage of the Apple landing page selling iMac products. It's a sleek, simple design featuring a bolded headline that reads "iMac" at the top in black, seven iMac computers in a rainbow of colors, and a white background.

Apple is the textbook definition of in-depth, consistent branding. Apple's brand and what it represents gives them a key competitive advantage. Not only does Apple bear a sleek, sexy corporate brand, but it also extends that same image into each of its technology products.

We see evidence of this in how products are named (e.g. iPhone, iMac, iPod, etc.), how they’re packaged, and even the simple and user-friendly ways their products function.


Three of SharkNinja products: A panni press, a blender and an airfryer. Each item fetaures similar materials and elements that show they are products from the same brand.

Maker of powerful kitchen and home solutions, SharkNinja has created a premium brand image and leverages multi-branding as part of its brand strategy.

From steam mops to knife blocks to patented air cleaning technologies, products bear either the Shark or the Ninja name and embody durability, power, and longevity in all of its branding. Both names are well-established, well-defined about what they do, and are dedicated to the high-end market with high-quality products.


An image that features the dozens of candy brands that Hershey's owns and manufactures.

Hershey's lengthy history, reputation for low-cost products, and positioning as a multi-product company has made it a popular brand name in sweets. Because its collection of products can vary greatly from one to the next, it makes sense to invest in individual product branding in addition to a corporate identity.

In Hershey’s case, each of its confections bears its own name, logo, packaging, color scheme, product design, and other details.

Remember, good brand management isn’t just about a logo, tagline, or cool package design. It’s the way that all of your visual elements, values, and personality work together long-term to appeal to your target audience.

Let your product’s identity be your guide. When you let it speak directly to your audience, you’ll have an easier time earning their loyalty and standing out for the right reasons.