Aleksandra Stevović is winner of the Mark Awards recognition in the BRAND MANAGER OF THE YEAR category. She has been speaking to Cord about REMARKABLE brands.
How would you describe a REMARKABLE brand?
A remarkable brand is one that is trusted, since it often uses its credibility to raise the importance of a category or an entire industry. It is a brand that is easily engraved in the consumer’s soul with its performance because it has, first of all, an essence, a personal touch, character and consistent communication. It is maintained at the pinnacle of success by a solidly based strategy and clear goals. Listening to its environment, monitoring market needs and adjusting its portfolio are just some of the factors that keep it consistent with its core values.
Who creates a brand today – consumers or corporations?
Brands are created by innovators, those motivated, passionate and capable enough to reform existing or create completely new tools needed to overcome everyday challenges, or mechanisms for a simpler and more fulfilled life. Let’s remember that the biggest global brands in the IT industry, retail, media and telecommunications are actually the visions of individuals who, with an unbreakable connection with the consumer, were built by then small businesses – today the world’s largest corporations. In order for a brand to survive and remain successful, its creators must initially provide useful, then additional value to those who buy that brand, build a relationship with the consumer, and ultimately justify expectations for future offers and one day, with a little luck, become a “lovemark”.
Is brand building a sprint or a marathon?
Always a marathon. Along the way, as we can observe the strategic approach of brand building, certain sprints will often happen – tactical activities that will just strengthen the brand’s position on the market. What’s more, we should not forget that creating an outstanding “marathon runner” requires you to be well prepared for a race against competitors, and all this through training, constant work on yourself and fighting personal challenges. It is important to have a plan, strong support on the track and on the bench, to know when you should run, at what speed and when you plan to reach the finish line. The dynamics will occasionally be determined by weather conditions, external factors, so they will adapt to new circumstances, while the final result, when everyone reaches the goal and looks back, will be a medal for serious work.
How important are changes for mature brands?
Changes are not only important, but also valuable for producers to be competitive on the market. Every change brings something new, and thanks to them, brands grow, develop and respond to the modern needs of consumers. The agility of a mature brand to adapt to frequent turbulence in the world economy and to the digital transformation of business is of enormous importance for its positioning.
What does the Mark Awards recognition mean to you and how will it affect your further career?
The very nomination for the Mark Awards brought me great satisfaction, many new contacts, but also additional motivation and responsibility, especially towards the younger members of the marketing department of PepsiCo, with whom I will collaborate even more intensively in the coming period. As this competition for awarding individuals is designed so that each of the nominees is presented equally to the profession, to colleagues in respected positions and to the general public, I was extremely pleased to be one of this year’s candidates for brand manager of the year. Recognition of this type certainly provides personal satisfaction, confirmation that I have made something of quality, something notable of which my family will be proud, which is my greatest reward.