There is something in a name

Turns out Shakespeare’s famous line, “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet,” doesn’t quite fit with every scenario. Case in point, Wal-Mart Stores, which, according to Millward Brown Optimor’s BrandZ ranking of the top 20 global retail brands, saw its brand value diminish when it decided to rename its Wal-Mart stores, Walmart. 

Though Walmart topped the list of the most valuable retail brands, its brand value declined 4% from last year. According to BrandZ this was due to the subtle spelling change that may have caused shopper confusion. 

BrandZ valued Walmart at $39.4 billion, with a brand contribution (how much of a company’s earnings were generated because of customer perception ) of 2 and a brand momentum (the growth potential of brand-driven earnings) of 8. It is important to note that BrandZ’s ratings of Walmart focused only on Walmart-branded stores and not other banners owned by the company Wal-Mart Stores, such as Sam’s Club and Asda.

Going forward BrandZ said Walmart’s challenge will be in achieving store efficiency and operational savings, while improving assortment to meet customer expectations. Above all, according to the BrandZ report, Walmart must continue to make price a core aspect of its proposition. 

And focusing on price leadership has been part of Walmart’s latest marketing push.

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