Difference Between Brand and Product

Difference Between Brand and Product

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Chanchal
Chanchal Aggarwal
Senior Executive Content
Updated on May 20, 2024 11:51 IST

Are brand and product the same? If not, how do they contrast? A brand is a company's identity and reputation, while a product is a specific item or service it offers. For example, Apple is a Brand, and iPhone is its Product. Let's understand the Brand and Product differences in detail. 

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A product is a physical item or service being sold, while a brand is a company's overall identity and reputation built up over time. Let’s understand it with an example.

Without a doubt, we all are aware of the famous mobile brand Apple. 

Apple as a brand is differentiated from its competitors because of its brand identity. It has built up a reputation as a tech company that values innovation, sleek design, and user experience.

When we talk about its products, we have an iPhone, MacBook, Apple Airpods, etc. These are all physical items that can be purchased and used by consumers. 

So, a Brand is developed over time, and a product is something tangible item that can be purchased or sold. Let’s find out more about Brand vs Product an important concept of Brand Management

Explore: Brand Management Online Courses

Table of Content

Comparative Table: Brand vs Product

Parameters Brand Product
Definition A unique name, design, symbol, term, or feature that distinguishes one company’s goods or services from those of others in the marketplace A physical or tangible item that is manufactured, produced, or created to meet a specific need or want
Focus Identity and perception of the company in the marketplace Physical characteristics and attributes of the item
Examples Apple, Nike, Coca-Cola iPhone, Air Max shoes, Coca-Cola Classic
Key components Brand name, logo, tagline, brand identity, brand positioning Design, features, benefits, quality, packaging
Marketing Branding, advertising, public relations, social media, events, sponsorships Product development, pricing, promotion, distribution
Importance Determines customer loyalty, trust, and reputation Influences purchase decisions, differentiation from competitors
Duration Long-term, evolves over time Short-term, specific lifespan
Scope Can encompass multiple products or services Refers to a single item or line of related items
Value Intangible, subjective, and emotional Tangible, objective, and functional
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What is Brand?

A brand is a “name, term, sign, symbol, or design, or a combination of them, intended to identify the goods and services of one seller or group of sellers and to differentiate them from those of competition.” 

-American Marketing Association

Brands include a combination of name, term, design, symbol, or other feature that identifies a company’s products or services. Also, it distinguishes them from those of other companies. It represents a company’s overall image or reputation to its customers and the general public, encompassing its values, mission, and vision.

A strong brand can help a company differentiate itself from its competitors, create customer loyalty, and increase brand recognition. The company requires a strategic approach to create a brand that focuses on creating a positive brand image, building brand awareness, and developing long-term customer relationships.

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For example:

The Apple logo, a simple bitten apple, has become synonymous with the company’s products, from iPhones to MacBooks. Customers immediately associate the logo with Apple’s reputation for excellence and cutting-edge technology when they see it.

Apple’s brand also includes its unique and recognizable product packaging, the “Think Different” slogan, and its retail stores’ sleek and modern design.

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Brand elements are the identifiable, distinct features that comprise a brand's identity. They include logos, slogans, brand names, symbols, and jingles. These elements collectively create a brand's unique image, making...read more

What is Product?

A Product is anything we can offer to a market for attention, acquisition, use, or consumption that might satisfy a need or want. Types of products cover a diversified range: consumer products, industrial products or service products. It can be basic necessities like food and clothing, luxury items like high-end cars, or designer handbags. A product typically has specific features and benefits that differentiate it from similar products in the market.

Therefore, a product can be physical good like a box, cereal, or tennis ball; a service such as banking, airline, or insurance; a retail outlet like a mall, supermarket, or departmental store or a person such as an entertainer, political figure, etc. 

For example:

One of Apple’s flagship products is iPhone; it is a physical device that combines a smartphone, a camera, a media player, etc. It has a touchscreen interface, runs on the iOS operating system, and so on.

The company also uses marketing strategies to promote the iPhone to its target audience on various mediums. It includes television commercials, online ads, and in-store displays.

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Difference Between Brand and Product

  • The main difference between a product and a brand is that a product is a physical item or service offered for sale. A brand encompasses the overall identity, perception, and emotional connection associated with that product. It includes its reputation, values, and consumer loyalty.
  • The brand encompasses various aspects such as the name, logo, packaging, advertising, reputation, and customer perception. The product has physical attributes such as its features, design, quality, functionality, and price.
  • Customers perceive a brand as a collection of values and emotions that are associated with it. In contrast, customers perceive a product as a set of functional attributes that fulfil their needs.
  • A brand creates an emotional connection with customers that fosters loyalty and trust, whereas a product does not necessarily create the same level of emotional attachment.
  • A company can extend its brand to different products or services with the same values and identity, whereas a product cannot be extended to different brands.
  • Competitors can copy or imitate a product, but a brand is an intangible asset that cannot be replicated. 

Final Note

The main difference between a brand and a product is that a product is a physical item or service that satisfies a specific need or want. In contrast, a brand is a unique identity representing a company or organization and its values, personality, and reputation. A brand signifies a product or service that creates an emotional connection with customers and sets it apart from competitors, while a product refers to an item’s tangible or intangible attributes that fulfil customers’ needs. 

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FAQs

What is the main difference between brand and product?

A brand is the overall image and identity of a company, product, or service, while a product is a tangible or intangible item that is offered for sale in the market.

How does a brand differ from a product in terms of perception?

A brand is perceived by customers as a collection of values and emotions that are associated with it, while a product is perceived by customers as a set of functional attributes that fulfill their needs.

Can a product exist without a brand?

Yes, a product can exist without a brand, but it may not be as recognizable or distinguishable from other products in the market.

Can a brand exist without a product?

No, a brand cannot exist without a product or service to represent it.

How does a brand create loyalty compared to a product?

A brand creates an emotional connection with customers that fosters loyalty and trust, whereas a product does not necessarily create the same level of emotional attachment.

Can a brand be extended to different products or services?

Yes, a brand can be extended to different products or services that share the same values and identity, while a product cannot be extended to different brands.

What are some examples of well-known brands and products?

Examples of well-known brands include Nike, Apple, and Coca-Cola, while examples of products include smartphones, cars, and laptops.

About the Author
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Chanchal Aggarwal
Senior Executive Content

Chanchal is a creative and enthusiastic content creator who enjoys writing research-driven, audience-specific and engaging content. Her curiosity for learning and exploring makes her a suitable writer for a variety ... Read Full Bio