INNOVATION is a BRAND’s wheel that turns fortunes

You know what’s really difficult?

Being Succinct. Seriously…. it’s ridiculously hard. if you don’t believe me then try to ask one of your favorite copywriter. It’s especially difficult to express a complex emotional concept in couple of words…. what is exactly brand names, logo and slogan.

That’s why numerous brands deserve a lot of respect who has done this right. The ones that have figured out how to convey their value proposition to their customers in just one short and simple sentence.

Brand and Branding are complex terminologies that encapsulate many different things. Quite simply, your brand is the way your customer perceives you. In its most basic form, it’s your promise to customer which tells what they can expect from your products and services. According to Leo Burnett “A brand symbol is anything that leaves a mental picture of the brand’s identity”. Moreover, your brand isn’t what you say, it’s about what you do and how does it impact people which is evident from the picture.


There are three factors that are important to what defines a brand:

  1. First, there needs to be desire to perform a certain vision.
  2. Secondly, there needs to be something that represent story.
  3. Lastly, there also needs to be someone who interprets the mediator to represent the brand story (Hestad 2013, p. 11).

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Let’s dwell it deeper by taking an example of one of the most successful brand i.e. “MASTERCARD”.

MasterCard: There are some things money can’t buy. For everything else there is a MasterCard 


This slogan was created in 1997 as a part of an award-winning advertising campaign that ran in 90+ companies and in 40+ languages. The first iteration of this campaign was TV commercial that was aired in 1997. “The dad takes his son for a baseball match and paid for his food but the conversation between the dad and son was Priceless”From this moment onward the word Priceless became a viral.

The value MasterCard deliver

Everybody wants easier ways to pay: MasterCard invent them.

Commuters are busy: MasterCard speed them on their way.

Retailers wants to fight fraud: MasterCard provide the tools.

Corporate purchasing is complex: MasterCard make it simple.

Small businesses are vital: MasterCard give them access to world of buyers (MasterCard Worldwide 2012).

MasterCard’s Brand Strategy

When carrying out the brand strategy there are few questions that needs to be answered: How you will achieve this? What resources will be needed? and what are the important milestones? While keeping all these questions in mind MasterCard company has implemented its brand strategy in all-touch points to create a coherent brand. The product was only one of many key elements that contributed in communicating what brand is about.

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The power of the brand: MasterCard’s ‘priceless’ campaign

The development of the priceless campaign was based on solid research. MasterCard had applied rigorous marketing research and analytical techniques to reveal shifting consumer attitudes. Few agencies pitched and several campaigns were tested. McCann-Erickson was chosen and its message, ‘the best to pay for everything that matters’ touched consumers’ hearts. This campaign had an immediate success with four spots introduced in 1997.

With this success, MasterCard’s challenge was to determine if it would work around the world. The strategic concept behind the campaign was tested in various global markets and the priceless campaign won each market. MasterCard began its alliancewith FIFA world cup soccer in 1990 and soon it became an official FIFA sponsor and continued its involvement through the 2002 world cup in Korea/Japan. From a strategic standpoint, this alliance was an important component of the association’s overall strategy to create business building opportunities and priceless moments for millions of cardholders around the globe. The FIFA worked perfectly as the platform to utilize the Priceless campaign for worldwide reach.

MasterCard continued to innovate with the priceless theme for building new opportunities and reaching out new markets.  Continuing its priceless campaign recently in the month of February MasterCard’s brand ambassador Usher has created one priceless moment for targeted group of artists super fan (Elliott and Percy 2007, p. 72).

Check out the video for more details!!

 A world beyond cash, a world beyond hunger

Notwithstanding, there is another story which showcase how the brand was actively involved in supporting the World Food program which gave hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees displaced in Lebanon access to food without exchange of cash (Bolman 2015, para. 4 ).


This is how MasterCard went from broadcaster to global brand publisher. In 2014 alone, MasterCard digital community-building grew by leaps and bounds. To encapsulate, MasterCard’s journey to establish itself as a successful brand has taken persistence, dedication and commitment to recruiting the right resources and the efficacious use of technology.

Differentiation is the vital component if you want to make your brand stand out of the crowd. If your brand isn’t visible it won’t be viable.

By Adish Gupta

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Bolman, C 2015, How MasterCard Went from Broadcaster to Global Brand Publisher, Percolate Industries, Inc., retrieved 26 August 2016, < >

Elliott, R, Percy, L 2007, Strategic Brand Management, Oxford University press, New York.

Hestad, M 2013, Branding and Product Design : An Integrated Perspective, Gower publishing limited, England.

MasterCard Worldwide 2012, MasterCard Our story, company profile, retrieved 27 August 2016,< >

Metric Marketing n.d., The importance of branding in your marketing, Metrics Marketing resources, retrieved 25 August 2016, < >



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