Products or services with special characteristics are referred to as brands or branded goods. The main characteristics of a brand from the customer's perspective are: recognition by name and logo, consistent quality/quantity/presentation, lasting and national recognition, distinctiveness, orientation aid. The main functions of the brand from the company's perspective are: means of communication from the manufacturer to the intermediate or end user, differentiation from competitors, preference formation, brand loyalty, scope for pricing, strengthening and securing the sales base, target group marketing, legal brand protection, guarantee of security. In Germany, the Trademark Act (MarkenG) defines, among other things: "The main function of the brand is to guarantee the consumer or end user the identity of the origin of the marked goods or services by enabling them to distinguish these goods or services from goods and services of other origin without any risk of confusion."

See also: Age Management; Marketing; Product Management; Employer Branding; Leadership Reference to QET guidelines: Q09 Customers; Q10 Networks; Q11 Branding; Q12 Quality Management; T11 Marketing

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