Umbrella brand

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Umbrella branding (also called a family brand) is when a firm uses a brand name for two or more products.[1] All products use the same means of identification and have no additional brand names or symbols attached. Umbrella branding does not mean that the whole product portfolio of a firm will fall under one brand name as company can go for different approaches of branding for different product lines.[2]

Axe (by Unilever) has different types of products that use the same family brand


Umbrella Branding makes different product lines easily identifiable by the consumer by grouping them under one brand name. It provides uniformity reducing marketing cost for firms and helps consumers make a positive association with the products. All products under the same umbrella brand are expected to have a uniform quality and user experience.[3] It is the branding strategy that gives the probability of a brand extension for every possible quality of profile.[4]

Umbrella branding generates savings in brand development and marketing costs over time and can create advertising efficiencies. Consumer’s experience in one category may affect their quality perception of another product or service falling under same umbrella brand.

Some factors which may influence the impact of umbrella branding are:

  1. The degree of commonality among the products falling under umbrella brand for same usage by customers.
  2. Nature of branding policy applied by the firm as advertising and marketing different products under umbrella brand will be less informative but at the same time it will be less complex for target audience to understand.

Use in advertising[edit]

Umbrella branding can be proven effective when customers use information in one advertisement to make an inference about a product with the same brand name. The association can reduce the advertising cost per effective image. [5]

Popular Usage[edit]

Virgin Group, Procter & Gamble and Unilever are examples of companies that follow umbrella branding. Similar products are grouped under one brand name, such as Dove (toiletries) , Axe (men's toiletries) , Tide (laundry products) and Vicks (cough and cold products).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Fry, J. N. (1967). "Family branding and consumer brand choice". Journal of Marketing Research 1 (Pre-1986): 4(000003), 237. 
  2. ^ Kapferer, Jean-Noël (2008). The new strategic brand management: creating and sustaining brand equity long term. Kogan Page Publishers. p. 364. ISBN 9780749450854. 
  3. ^ Fry, J.N (1967). "Family branding and consumer brand choice". Journal of Marketing Research 1 (Pre - 1986): 4 , 237. 
  4. ^ Umbrella Branding - Millward
  5. ^ Besanko, David; Dranove, David; Schaefer, Scott; Shanley, Mark (2012). "Part 1". Economics of Strategy. p. 73.