Learn about word combination with ‘product’, goods, brands and branding.

Audio Episode

Practice Booklet (For the Entire Mini-Series)

Business English Marketing … by English Plus Podcast

Episode Transcript

welcome to a new episode from our mini series about business English marketing. Now this episode is going to focus on products and brands. Remember I told you in the earlier episodes of our mini series, that we will talk in more details about the marketing myths. And this is our first stop products and brands.

[00:00:25] Remember the four piece we talked about in the earlier episode, product price, place, promotion product. That’s what we’re going to talk about today. And we will talk about brands and branding. Just before we start. Let me remind you that if you want to practice the things we’re learning, you can use the booklet, the practice booklet that I’ve provided with the mini series.

[00:00:43] You can find it on our website, English plus or you can find it on our Patrion page. So that being said, let’s start right away and let’s start with some word combinations with product. Now we have the word product catalog. I catalog by the way, is spelled in two different ways in British English and American English, because you might find them sometimes spelled C a T a L O G U E.

[00:01:07] And sometimes you might find it spelled C a T a L O G. That’s it well with the UAE at the end, that’s the British English spelling with the G only catalog C a T a L O G. That’s the American English spelling, but it doesn’t matter. It has the same meaning when we talk about a product catalog, what does that mean?

[00:01:26] That means a list of companies, products, as simple as that, a list of the company’s products is the product catalog. So that is what we call the list of the company’s product. What do we call a company’s products considered together? And in relation to one another, what do we call that? We call that the product mix or the product portfolio.

[00:01:46] So again, the product mix or the product portfolio, that’s a company’s products considered together. And in relation to one another. What do we call a company’s products of a particular type? That’s what we call the product line or product range. So product line or product range, that’s a company’s product of a particular type.

[00:02:09] What about product lifecycle? When we say the product life cycle, we hear that, especially in marketing, what does that mean? That means the stages in the life of a product. And the number of people who buy it at each stage, that’s the product life cycle. What about product positioning? That is how a product is seen or how a company would like it to be seen in relation to its other products and or two competing products.

[00:02:36] So product positioning and the final combination is product placement. What does that mean? Product placement? That is when a company pays for its products to be used or seen in films and TV programs. That’s product placement. So before we move on and talk about goods, let’s talk about those words that we use with product.

[00:02:57] We said product catalog, product mix, or portfolio. We said product line or range, the product life cycle, the product positioning and the product placement. When you want to plan and think about the product, the first P that is in the four pillars of marketing, you have to think about all these things.

[00:03:16] Maybe some of them are not as important as other things. Maybe the product mix is not as important as its life cycle, depending on your product, but you have to consider all of these things. Now let’s continue on and talk about goods. What are goods? And is it any different from product? Well, it’s not, but goods is a special word that we use to talk about.

[00:03:36] Specific kinds of products. Now goods are the materials and components used to make products or the products that are made. We call them goods. Raw materials are basic materials from which other things are made. So we have goods that might be the finished product or finished goods, or might be raw materials.

[00:03:55] But if you want to focus on one or the other, you can say finished goods, and these are the products ready to be sold. And you can say raw materials. And these are the basic materials from which other things are made. Now, what about other words we can use with goods? We have industrial goods, industrial goods are bought by other companies for use in their activities and products.

[00:04:18] These are industrial goods companies buying from companies to make other products. These are industrial goods, and that is different from when we say consumer goods, consumer goods are bought by individuals for their own use. So here, if companies buy from other companies to integrate in their own products or to make new products from those things they buy from other companies, we call these industrial goods.

[00:04:43] But when we talk about individual use, like when you buy a TV or a cell phone, et cetera, that is consumer goods. Now consumer goods that lasts a long time, such as cars and washing machines are called consumer durables. So remember this word, consumer durables, not like things that you buy and use for a couple of times and then throw away, or maybe just you use it once.

[00:05:07] No, these are things that you used for a long time. We call them consumer durables, consumer goods, such as food products that sell in large quantities are fast moving consumer goods. So here we have two different types of consumer goods. We have consumer durables, those things that you buy and keep for a long time like cars, washing machines, and even cell phones and things you buy consume quickly.

[00:05:33] And it’s over like food products, for example. And usually they sell in large quantities. These are called fast moving consumer goods, or you can use the FMCG aggravation FMCG for fast moving consumer goods. So these are the goods. We talked about word combinations with products. We talked about goods, the different types of goods, the goods, the raw materials, finished goods, industrial goods, consumer goods, consumer durables, and fast moving consumer goods.

[00:06:01] Now let’s move on and talk about brands and branding. Now to have a product is not enough. You need to have a brand, a company gives a brand or a brand name to its products so that they can be easily recognized. They may be the name of the company itself. In this case, you can talk about the make. Of the product, the make of the product, that’s the company itself, for example, LG, Sony, or Apple.

[00:06:26] These are the names of the company. That’s the make. But for many other products you can refer to the make and model. So we have the make, which is the name of the company usually. And the model, like when we say Ford focus, the car Ford is the make focus is the model. And. Talking about this, you can think about old cars.

[00:06:45] We have the make of the car, the company that made the car and the model of the car, the special name given to this type of cars. Now the Sony video, for example, or the Canon EOS the Sony via the Sony is the, make the word. Sony is the main vial is the model Canon EOS. We’re talking about cameras here again.

[00:07:04] Cannon is the make. EOS is the model that some brand names become names for the whole product category. For example, Hoover for vacuum cleaners. Now, if you think of vacuum cleaners, you think of Hoover, but Hoover is a brand name is just a company. It’s not every single company that makes vacuum cleaners.

[00:07:22] That word is vacuum cleaner, but a lot of people refer to vacuum cleaners as Hoover, even if the make is not Hoover. So you see sometimes brand is very important, very strong. Some brand names become names for the whole product category. And here we come to the concept of brand awareness or brand recognition.

[00:07:42] What do we mean by brand awareness or brand recognition? That’s the degree to which people know a particular brand. All the ideas that people have about a particular brand are its brand image. So here, the brand image are all the ideas people have about your product and how well they know that is the brand awareness or brand recognition.

[00:08:02] So at the beginning of your company’s life, you might work a lot on this part. You might work a lot on raising your brand awareness because not a lot of people know about your brand yet, but maybe they will very soon. So you need to focus on this part. It’s not always just making the perfect product.

[00:08:22] Yeah. Making the perfect product is great. But if nobody knows about this perfect product, nobody is aware of this perfect product. And even if you sell this perfect product, but people do not have a clear idea about your brand because you yourself don’t know that yet you need to work on your brand. The very first thing before launching, before even thinking about designing the product, your great product might sell.

[00:08:47] In the short run, but your brand is going to sell in the long run. When people start to trust your brand, they’re going to buy almost anything you sell. And that’s a fact when you think about brand names like Apple, I mean, people, especially people who like Apple products, they’re just addicted to Apple.

[00:09:04] They would buy anything. Apple makes, even if they start making blender mixers. For example, if a blender mixers make is Apple, people will buy it. I’m not saying this is a good idea, of course, but what I’m saying is that people trust. This brand. So that’s why brand awareness brand recognition is very important.

[00:09:21] Working on your brand image is very important. And for some big companies like that, they have a brand manager, a person, or maybe even a team which have a brand manager who is in charge of the marketing of goods or services with a particular brand, a brand manager. A person who is just there to Polish the brand image and to raise awareness, to raise brand awareness all the time to help people know, recognize this brand wherever they see it.

[00:09:49] And here, we’re not just talking about the specifications of your product. We’re talking about everything. We’re talking about, the design, the color, the font, the words, the slogans, everything that is part of your brand. And the most important thing about branding is consistency. You need to be consistent when you want to think of a brand.

[00:10:07] Everything has to be consistent. I need to just take one quick look, wherever I see your product. I need to know that you make this product, whoever you are. Think of all the famous brands out there. You just look at something, you know, that’s Google, Oh, that’s Facebook sometimes just from the color, because there are people who are working hard on creating this consistent brand.

[00:10:28] And of course, they’re working on raising brand awareness and polishing this brand image in the minds of people in the minds of your market. Remember the market is the people when someone talks about branding, what does that mean? Branding is creating brands and keeping them in customers’ minds, through advertising product and package design, and so on.

[00:10:48] And here, remember, as I said, all of these things have to be like one package, one big package, one thing, advertising, product, package, design, they all have to be in tune. They cannot be different things. People who work on these things. They need to talk to each other all the time, because consistency is the most important thing.

[00:11:07] Anyway, a brand should have a clear brand identity so that people think of it in a particular, hopefully positive way in relation to other brands. Now, that being said, we’re not saying that every single product in the market is branded. Some products are not branded the products that do not have a manufacturer’s brand name on them.

[00:11:26] We have products like that and we call these generic products or generics. So we have generic products or generics. These are the products that are not branded, and there is some use for these products because they may be cheaper. Think about the medications. For example, when you talk about medications.

[00:11:44] Yes, we have a lot of brands. We have a lot of big pharmaceutical companies that creates certain brands, but we have generics as well. We have generic medication, which is a lot cheaper and for a lot of kinds of medications for daily use that might be necessary, you know, because brands cost money and that is going to increase the pricing of the product.

[00:12:03] Generics are definitely cheaper. Now we also have a third type. What about a product sold by a retailer with its own name rather than the name of its manufacturer? You can see that in supermarkets all the time. That is what we call an own brand product or an own label, product, or store brand. Now, let me tell you here in British English, they call it own brand product in American English.

[00:12:27] They call it own label, product, or store brand. And you can find that all the time, specially in your nearest supermarket, if you go there, especially if the supermarket is big, they buy products from companies and they put their own label on it. So that’s what we call own label, product, or store brand. Now, with that being said, that’ll be all about products and branding.

[00:12:47] For this episode, let me remind you again. If you want to practice what you’re learning here, you can use the part dedicated for this episode in the booklet, the PDF booklet that I’ve included with the mini series, both on our website, English plus and on our Patreon page, that being said, this is your host, Danny. [00:13:03] I would like to thank you very much for listening to another episode in business English marketing series. I will see you in the other episodes.

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