Monday, April 18, 2016

Maintain Conceptual Comfort of Copycats

A “copycat brand” in a store aims to imitate the appearance of the prototype brand—the brand name and label design best known by your target market consumers for that product or service category. Copycat brands can sell well, often because you are able to offer them at lower prices than the prototype brands.
     Shoppers find comfort in being with brands they’ve known well for a long time. Consumer psychologists talk about “the mere exposure effect.” Shoppers tend to have more favorable attitudes toward something they’ve seen before. Copycats work nicely due to the mere exposure effect, and as long as product or service performance meets customers’ expectations, the copycat can become their personal prototype.
     However, according to a number of research studies, a danger with stocking copycat brands is that shoppers will feel you’re trying to trick them. This is especially likely if you have charts in ads or on store signs which compare characteristics, features, or benefits of the copycat and the prototype.
     Researchers at Macau University of Science and Technology and University of Hong Kong considered instances in which a supplier uses a copycat brand name meant to resemble the name of the prototype brand. They found a way to avoid the danger of trickery perception while preserving the selling advantages: Stock copycats with names that imply the same concepts as the prototypes, but appear on packages, signage, and ads in a way easy to distinguish from the conceptually similar name on the packages of the prototype items. For Scope mouthwash, a good copycat match might be Range, while for Ruffles chips, it might be Flourishes.
     Researchers at University of Cologne and Tilburg University suggest that the type of copycat you carry should be based on the physical proximity of the prototype brand in your store layout. The researchers distinguished among low-, moderate-, and high-similarity copycats, depending on how much the package design and brand name resembled the prototype’s.
     If you don’t carry the prototype brand in your store, you’ll do best having high-similarity copycats. But by stocking both the prototype and copycat, you offer variety, and variety attracts shoppers. If you do have both and you stock the prototype brand adjacent to the copycats, you’ll do best carrying moderate-similarity copycats. The moderate-similarity copycat doesn’t arouse consumer suspiciousness. The person realizes they can easily tell the difference in package design, so they don’t fear being tricked.

For your profitability: Sell Well: What Really Moves Your Shoppers

Click below for more: 
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