Umbrella Brand

Umbrella Brand

Umbrella Brand

Image Source: ©Daniel Prudek -

When all services and product offers of a company are gathered and centrally managed under one brand, as is the case with Siemens, General Electric, IKEA, Allianz, Phoenix Contact, Hoval, or Harley Davidson, we refer to that brand as an umbrella brand.

An umbrella brand is a brand architecture concept. A brand architecture defines the relationships among several brands within one organization and prevents the brands from hampering one another. It ensures that performances which fit together due to their credibility are managed jointly under one brand.

The second business relevant dimension is the company's performance: From a sales perspective, it may make sense to sell this performance under different brands if it increases the chance of having more "shelf space" at the PoS or of achieving higher market penetration. The BrandTrust portfolio system shows the various strategic possibilities between the two poles umbrella brand strategy and single brand strategy in a 3 x 3 matrix.

Often, and particularly in corporations with many different single brands, the umbrella brand is put on a level with the corporate brand to represent the basic values and principles of the corporation. This is necessary to provide all brands with a formal framework and also to give employees some orientation. Frequently, an umbrella brand in this function also takes on the role of employer brand. Some examples are Unilever, Nestlé, Ferrero, or BASF.


Our recommendation:

Book: Value Branding: The first textbook for technology brands

Umbrella Brand Strategy

Umbrella Brand Strategy

Umbrella Brand Strategy

Bildquelle: ©magann -

An umbrella brand strategy describes the way an umbrella brand achieves the brand positioning. It contains goals and principles of brand management and the brand architecture, which defines the relationship of the subordinate single brands (individual performances of the company) with the umbrella brand.

An umbrella brand strategy is chosen primarily when the range of performances of an organization is too broad for the multitude of its single brands, or when the brand positionings of the essential activities fit together and can therefore be united under one umbrella brand strategy.




Uptrading - © Bryan Schneider / Pexels

Uptrading is supposed to give a product a higher value – which in turn justifies its higher price. Product manufacturers want to use this effect to emphasize the difference between their brands and store brands, for instance. This development is particularly visible on grocery store shelves.

But companies in other sectors are also trying to lift brands into the premium segment – with new product features from the medium price segments with low margins, for example.

How does uptrading a brand work?

A price increase alone will not do it. Neither will superficial uptrading by means of a new marketing mix. Rather, it has to be supported by corresponding peak performances and an expanded benefit argumentation. Often, brands even have to adapt the underlying business models and processes to gain higher customer appreciation.

These are the basic uptrading options:

Uptrading of individual products:

  • with new product performances and innovations
  • with differentiation, which means: a specific performance offered to different target groups

Uptrading of entire brand systems:

  • by elevating it to the premium level: for instance turning a mid-range brand into a premium or luxury brand or boosting a no-name brand to a distinctive brand

Uptrading individual products is far less challenging than raising the value of entire brand systems: To do that, consumer habits must be broken and permanently changed. That in turn demands that the emotional customer benefit exceeds that of comparable products.


Our reading recommendation:

From average to luxury brand: How uptrading of brands works

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