GAINING RECOGNITION: BRANDING OUR PRODUCTS

, Business

Brands

Buying a Rolex watch is perhaps what most well-off people deem a life-changing event. There are hundreds of successful brands out there but not all of them give that prestigious feeling of exclusivity to their customers as the likes of Rolex.

It is undeniable that Rolex remains a nouveau-rich man’s first expensive watch, but it is also true that very few people discard the brand after further increasing their wealth. The question arises: which indigenous brands are Pakistan’s top brands and where do they stand in international brand rankings?

While the first part of the question may have various answers, the answer to the latter part is unambiguously definitive: Pakistani brands stand nowhere globally. Actually, they stand nowhere even in Pakistan. The most popular brands in Pakistan are foreign. So pathetic is the branding of Pakistani products that no market research company produces a regular list of top Pakistani brands.

According to a recent market study conducted by London-based Edbiz Consulting, QMobile has emerged as the most popular brand in the category of mobile phones and accessories. It is not surprising for those who have now become used to advertisements of QMobile on the electronic media.

QMobile has overtaken Nokia, which once dominated Pakistan’s telecommunications industry for long, as a premier telephony company. However, it appears as if the dominance of QMobile is driven by price competitiveness of its products, as quality is hardly the main cause for its popularity and growth of sales.

In home appliances, Dawlance emerged as the most popular brand. Super Asia is second. In fashion clothing, popular brands include Junaid Jamshed (among men) and Bareeze and Gul Ahmed (among women).

In food categories, Gourmet has emerged as the most upcoming brand in the country. In schools, Beaconhouse is closely followed by City School.

Beaconhouse has emerged as the most prestigious pedagogical brand, as it is deemed a life-changing “consumer” item. It is an interesting finding, which must have implications for brand development in the country.

In the absence of prestigious brands like Rolex, Louis Vuitton and similar high-end products, the emergence of an education business as the most prestigious brand tells a story. This clearly implies that a vast majority of people in Pakistan put a very high value on education for their children.

Those who are considering investing in a viable business in Pakistan must look into the education sector from primary to tertiary level. There are already some educational groups, including Beaconhouse, Allied Schools and some other similar groups that offer educational services from nursery to university levels.

However, Beaconhouse National University stands nowhere close to Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), in terms of prestige and quality of instruction. While Beaconhouse covers from nursery to university levels, LUMS remains a tertiary education provider.

Hence, despite successes of the likes of Beaconhouse and Allied Schools, Punjab Group of Colleges and the University of Central Punjab, there still appears to be an opportunity to develop a comprehensive education model covering quality instruction from school to the university level.

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