Industrial Branding and its future
The early 1950s saw the rise of mass communication around the globe. The brand sphere was dominated by non-durables and FMCGs, consumer durables and automobiles. With the early 1990s came a similar phenomenal upsurge in India. Today, the rules and definition that were applicable two decades ago have changed with time. The domination of one media agency handling a single client is over. Now days, clients have multiple agencies, specializing in each core activity. A client may have an agency to look after creatives, an agency handling media, and an altogether different agency handling its digital branding activity. Even within the sphere of creative communication a client may have a different ATL agency handling mass communication and a different agency working on its product brochure and print needs. The times in communication are changing, and changing fast. With the change, a new economic order also seems to be fast emerging...
Factually speaking Industrial clients are 'not for mass promotion' cases, nor are they as many in numbers as in Business 2 Consumer. However, since world economies are growing leaps and bounds, industrial brands are also increasing day in and day out. Industrial Branding, the subset, at some point in time, now looks like a universal set itself. The market thus, is huge and rapidly growing.
In India, particularly, post liberalisation (1990s), there has been exposure and awareness in the context of communication tools, specifically industrial communication and branding tools. Manufacturers started exporting in larger quantities across spheres and hence a lot more travel overseas. These got them tremendous exposure of good and bad communication, varied tools and applications available for crisper and higher communication for their products and brands. For several years till then they were dependent on small time printers next door, who would design and print as per their requirements. With advent of internet, and exposure of seeing international competition online and physically, the next door printers could no longer live up to their expectations. The manufacturers wanted better designs and hence needed better agencies. This was the time, small players mushroomed, offering domain specific services like web design and hosting, brochure and catalogue printing, stall designing or making specific process/product films. These agencies were chiefly solo or at most 3-5 persons driven and market on the basis of relations or client proximity. These so to say agencies created more damage than gain to the client, with their inconsistent approach, myopic vision, disjointed concepts, limited market knowledge and technological design along with content mediocrity.
The Industrial client of the 21st century wants – a Brand Communication Company. A company which could provide solutions in the fields of print, web, film or stall designing, a company that could cater to content generation and script writing, a company that could have dedicated support staff, a company that could understand the client’s requirements and deliver the services as expected and on time. An agency which could grow along with the client, and like a mass communication agency, becomes a partner in progress. That’s an agency that could integrate communication, across all platforms.
The ideal Industrial Branding Agency is yet to emerge. And with emergence of an exclusive Industrial Branding Company, major clients in the sphere of Industrial domain will lean towards such an agency. An agency of their dream, which understands small budgets, smaller quantities, no ATL and most importantly difference between KG3 and KG3