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Image Research

Image is the net result of interaction of all experiences, impressions, beliefs and knowledge people have about a brand, product or company. In other words, an image si the sum total of impressions an individual has formed in his mind. Image is also the collective impression in the mind of the society about a brand, product, or company. Images are of three types in marketing, viz., (i) brand image, (ii) product image, and (iii) company image. Some people also categories images into four classes. They also include institutional images in their classification. Let us understand each of these types of images.

Brand image: This refers to the impressions the people have formed about a particular brand of a product class. Some brands have better images than others. Take the case of toilet soap brands like Lifebuoy, Camay, Cinthol, Ganga, Pears, etc., all these brands have a comparative ranking in the consumer’s mind. Some individuals may have better images for certain brands whereas other have better images for some different brands.

Product image: This refers to impressions people have about particular product class, e.g., cigarettes, motor vehicles, toilet soaps, etc. Some products have better images than others.

Corporate image: This refers to those impressions which consumers have formed in their minds about the policies of a particular company. For example, Hindustan Lever, Tata, Reliance, Grasim, Godrej, etc., have different images as manufacturers of producer. Many companies use a well-known and well-respected corporate identity to support their marketing effort and as such use these image as a “launch pad” for new product introductions. companies who fail to test the good corporate citizenship are likely to be taken to task by the public in many ways by fall-off in sales, lower price earnings ratios for their shares, difficulty in recreating self and in several other such ways.

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