Brand leadership model

David Aaker & Erich Joachimsthaler

The classic brand management system has worked well for many decades. However, it can fall short when dealing with emerging market complexities, competitive pressures, channel dynamics, global forces, and portfolios with multiple brands, aggressive brand extensions, and complex sub-brand structures. As a result, a new model, the brand leadership model, is gradually replacing the old paradigm.

In the brand leadership model, the manager is strategic and visionary rather than tactical and reactive. He or she takes control of the brand strategically and is involved in creating business strategy as well as implementing it. The strategic vision calls for the brand manager to be higher in the corporate hierarchy with a long-term job perspective. The brand manager is often the organisation's top marketing professional. The brand strategy should be influenced by the business strategy and should reflect the same strategic vision and corporate culture. The focus of the model is brand equity, which can be seen as an asset and the basis of competitive advantage. Thus, a system should be developed to monitor the sources of brand equity.