Brands are increasingly offering useful services and experiences ('utility') as a way to stand out and gain attention. Big data, digital media and technology offer unprecedented opportunity for marketers to develop relevant and convenient services to meet and even anticipate consumer needs. Digital assistants mean brands can now extend themselves further, offering highly localised and helpful utility to consumers.

Definition

Branded utility is the practice of investing in services or experiences that help consumers or add value to their lives.

Key Insights

1. Branded utility is helping Procter & Gamble shift to mass one-to-one brand building

With ads increasingly blocked and avoided, FMCG giant Procter & Gamble is looking to branded utility to create one-to-one engagement with consumers that is of more value to them than mass advertising. One example is the Olay Skin Advisor – a digital tool that offers personalised advice on a customer’s daily beauty routine. Another is SK-II’s Future X tech-powered store that lets a guest have their face scanned in order to secure customized beauty guidance from the premium beauty brand. According to CMO Mark Pritchard this is enabling the company to start achieving its vision “which is move from wasteful mass marketing to mass one-to-one brand-building.”