ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Brand Building for Public Services

Public Services S L RAO' s analysis of brand building in Indian industry (October 3, 1998) has missed consumers' preferences and brand loyalty for public services and utilities which have not been considered as important in the wake of liberalisation, privatisation and globalisation. At present there is more research and analysis aimed at finding but what branded products click in the market and how to promote brand preferences. But a similar enthusiasm is missing among market researchers when it comes to positioning services which are consumed by a large section of society. Take the case of public transport, public roads, public water supply and sanitation systems. When we think of Delhi transport we just shudder, but when we think of BEST in Mumbai we feel not so bad. Over a period of time in the minds of the public (consumers) these public services become branded products unconsciously. When we think of London Underground Transport or Metro we think of a reliable and a fairly efficient service. This applies to airlines and many other public services which are competing to provide the best service in the market place. In the process they become branded. But how can these service-providers think of branding them right from the beginning so that consumer loyalty is built without any problem? Consumers of municipal services in many cities think of them as a stink. How can we build a brand for these services which makes them lovable, reliable and consumer-friendly. Our child-care services are the best case to be branded. But unfortunately many mothers shudder to think of these child-care services which are not only child-unfriendly but also risky for the children. There are many areas in the public domain which need to be branded almost as consumer products (services) so that the service-providers and consumers really meet in the market place, At present we meet these providers as hostile clients and not as consumers.

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