Brand manager might sound like a glamourous job. To be working on some of the biggest brand names in the world but brand managers also have a huge responsibility. As a result, they can play a pivotal role within an organisation. This article aims to clarify what brand managers do and give some tips for those of you who would like to apply to this position at a company.
What is the role of a brand manager?
1. Protect the brand
Brand managers are the guardians of the brand and are responsible for ensuring that the products, services and product lines that fall under their brand resonate with current and potential customers.
2. Work with several departments within the company
They work tirelessly with the marketing department on making sure that every aspect of the brand strategy is just right. Brand Managers also need to be in contact with other departments such as finance, marketing communications, sales and product development to ensure a strategic overview of the business and future market opportunities.
3. Coordinate several marketing agencies
They also work with marketing and advertising agencies to make sure they’re respecting the brand purpose and guidelines throughout every communication.
4. Focus on the consumer
Brand Managers need to be able to draw on the consumer research and monitor market trends (think about the recent craze with Pokémon Go). Therefore, having a grasp of the target market and also potential target markets is the key. What are their reactions to the marketing campaigns? What’s being said on social media and how are people talking about the brand. How is the brand manager, managing or monitoring this process?
5. Make important business decisions
The brand manager can also play a pivotal role within senior management teams when providing feedback and analysis on key brand activity. For example, what return on investment has been seen from particular campaigns? What has worked well for specific products of the brand and what lessons can be learnt from others. Furthermore, helping to provide input into future activity as well as feed into help support corporate strategy and direction.
For many companies their brand manager is the most important person there. Because for many they are the ones responsible for overseeing the entire creative process.
How to prepare yourself for a brand manager position interview?
Below we look at some of the skills and attributes big named brands might look for in a brand manager. Try to find examples from your past experiences to support each one of the following skills/experiences.
First of all, for a brand manager you of course do need experience. Experience of working with brands and in some instances blue chip companies. Especially relevant will be how you display your passion for the marketing discipline.
To become a brand manager you will need a degree in brand management, marketing or similar area of discipline. (Normally for this level a minimum of 2:1 is required in the UK).
Research & Analysis skills
- Understanding of consumer needs and behaviour
- Strong analytical ability – analyse data, develop insights etc.
- Strong communication and interpersonal skills. Especially the ability to work cross-departments to achieve results
- Be a team player and a respected leader
- Run efficient and effective meetings
- Communicate clear decisions, next steps and accountability
- Have good presentation skills
Management and coordination skills:
- Strong attention to detail
- Have the ability to think big, delivering innovative strategic solutions
- Budget management skills
You can’t under estimate the power a brand manager.
Some of the information we’ve talked about is just a little about what working in branding would entail. You have to find out what it is you can offer a company, can you help meet their needs? Would you fit with their organisational culture and brand?
There has to be a passion and a desire to work in branding. You have to want to make your brand the best in its class. The one which is admired by others. You want the responsibility and control to look after the brand like it was your own. Of course you won’t be working alone. Teams are made up of brand managers and brand associates all working together to help shape the company’s values and reputation.
Finally, it is your ability to inspire others to want to work for the brand that will make you a successful brand manager.