- -  Updated with every noteworthy branding move  - -


Branding happens with every decision and action of all those who manage and represent the brand. Brands also get impacted by the actions of brands within their respective system, including persons entrusted with executive powers and by those who are influential for the brands.

Bad actions impact the brand negatively and good ones positively by their respective potential. Relative minor actions, be it negative or positive, hardly impact a brand independently but a chain of similar decisions and actions can stick to a brand hard as fundamental trait.

Potential of decisions and actions to impact a brand either way depends on the significance of such moves as against the expectations from the brand. Significance of an act or decision can also get diluted or enhanced in accordingly impacting the brand by the stature of the persons connected with such moves.

Interestingly, branding happens hardly by the objective and conscious decisions and actions to impact the brand. Much of the branding happens by the observations of the brand by its audience from the actions of the brand custodians - mostly done being unmindful of the impact on the brand.

'Insights from Practical BRANDING' reviews decisions and actions that make the critical impact, positive as well as negative, from across industry sectors and in the governance sphere.

Comments in these pages, on brands, including organizations and persons engaged in public governance and politics, bear no bias and are presented earnestly as part of practice and research on the principles of practical branding.

- -  Adve Srinivasa Bhat  - -



12 October 2015

Air India

/ Civil Aviation Ministry /

Govt of India / BJP

- Air India improves employees utilisation; saves on costs: report in Economic Times of; 7 Oct, 2015

- Centre asks Air India to hire more pilots, cabin crew:      report in Economic Times of; 9 Oct, 2015

>> Contradicting reports in less than 2 days:

>> The first one says; a) "Air India has managed to bring down the number of employees per aircraft by almost two-thirds", b) "The latest ratio -- a key performance indicator -- brings the airline almost at par with some of the global competitors the likes of Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines", and c) "Strategic planning and increased efficiency in manpower deployment has resulted in an improved aircraft-employee ratio .. has resulted in substantial cost savings."

>> The second report, 2 days later says; a) "civil aviation ministry has asked Air India to hire more pilots and cabin crew after it found that the national carrier is still reeling under a shortage that is resulting in delay of flights.", b) "(the move) comes shortly after Air India hired more than 900 cabin crew members and 220 pilots." and, c) "The carrier's poor on-time performance has been a concern for its management and the government for some time, with shortage of pilots and cabin crew", d) "The directive came in a meeting called by civil aviation secretary RN Choubey last week..", and e) "Another Air India executive, however, said the shortage is due to mismanagement and the airline has enough on its rolls."

<< the first report suggests flawed PR overdrive - beating down the already run down brand image. Cutting staff per aircraft by two-thirds tells of something awfully wrong with the airline either in the past or the present.

<< the second report reveals the real reason - DEFICIENT MANAGEMENT - for the mounting losses.

<< the report puts to the fore yet again the absence of social prudence in the govt funding the losses of the airline which has been sinking owing to deficient management.

>> Often the challenge is not in turning around a business but to decide if that should be tried at all.

<< continued hopeless situation would negatively impact; Air India, Civil Aviation Ministry, Govt of India and the ruling party (BJP) unless the decisions on the precariously functioning Airline are taken with appropriate social logic, exceptional management prudence and with great level of transparency. In fact BJP can substantially enhance its brand image with right decisions.

Reference Links:


Is the civil aviation minister complaining?

Flawed PR overdrive / Deficient Management

1 October 2015

Arvind Kejriwal


I fully support Nithish Kumar; Arvind Kejriwal - News: 1 Oct 2015 

Kejriwal questions PM Modi's foreign visits - 29 Sep 2015

'Make India' more important than 'Make in India'; Kejriwal - 28 Sep 2015


- 3 negative headlines in 4 days!! Arvind Kejriwal continues to shrink the mountain of powerful cult brand he created for himself and AAP. Branding happens by what the audience make out of what is said, not by what is said.


- with the above headlines, Arvind Kejriwal relates himself with crude politics - ironically for shunning which he was backed passionately by millions across India which eventually gave him the chance to rule Delhi - hence negative.


<< the kind of news flow about the party suggests real risk of; quick evaporation of Brand Equity.


>> keeping AAP the political party as a shallow brand has already hurt both the party and Arvind Kejriwal.


>> the highly mature decision to keep himself (CM) free with no particular portfolio appears as being spent on purposeless efforts. AAP's chance of extending to other states is too hard a game now with a weak organization turned weaker by the exit of some powerful people who had well become part of it.


>> Delhi is all about city management and with the bitter center-state relationship the task becomes only a lot more harder. The truth - both positions; CM (particularly without the portfolio!) and that of the party chief are well more than full time jobs each and even Arvind Kejriwal would find it slippery trying both.


>> the other truth AAP should know is that; for AAP for survival performance is critical and the approach it employs for achieving that is even more critical.


Reference Links:


Arvind, I am a little tensed.

becoming just as good or as bad as the rest to pin one's hopes on

22 September 2015


IndiGo to launch late night 'Red Eye' flights - News: Hindu Business Line, Sept 22, 2015 


- though a pick from the internationally prevalent concept IndiGo being true to its leadership status demonstrates superior competence and the urge to try meaningful product variations in absolute match with its core offer - Low Cost.


- with its upcoming public issue the timing of the decision is indeed commendable considering the positive impact it would have on the response to the issue


<< reinforces its leadership status.


>> market leader by the market share and and also by the profitability - IndiGo by showing profits year after year in a row and even through the hard times of high fuel prices proves the deficiencies in the management of other loss carrying airlines more than the astuteness in its own management.


>> IndiGo would substantially enhance its leadership status should it turn the product successful and turn in money from it. It has a hard task of developing the product fine by ensuring customer safety traveling to and from the airports at unsafe hours and also of effectively communicating the cost in the time customers save.


>> IndiGo, by the move, also suggests the right approach (launching new products / programs) to promoting public issue effectively while being cost efficient too - as compared to the heavy advertising companies usually try with.


Reference Links:

- -

Demonstrating leadership traits

8 September 2015

Jet Airways

Jet Airways to merge Jet Lite with itself News: 3 September 2015


- after 7 years of apparently clumsy branding efforts Jet Airways proves with its money that inept branding decisions cost and some as much as to threaten the very survival of the business. Like Kingfisher Airlines even Jet Airways ruled the skies once upon a time and both lost; Kingfisher the business and Jet the money and the competitive advantage, by a good measure owing to amateurish branding.


<< despite the enviable perceptions as being; ultra professional, big money play and very urbane civil aviation in India, as a business sector, is proven as "awfully challenged on the branding task". Hard to find exceptions; harder to find great branding moves.


Some quotes that tell the flaws;


" resulted in Jet buying Air Sahara and slog with that and Kingfisher buying sunk Deccan and sink with that" from; 'Social cost of flying Air India'


"Eventually, the bird would drive the business in its unique style - - for good. Or the business would strive to survive profitably - - hurting the bird also in the process." from; 'Kingfisher Airlines. Cropping Feathers'


" it is not as well known that inept branding decisions can misguide strategies and operations with long-term negative impact." from; 'Mating Kingfisher'


"Brand valuations are ever fuzzy and are highly subjective and often misunderstood and therefore misused. Often they can be gross nonsense too, like the way UB Group sold it to ignorant bankers as collateral, for more money." from; 'Kingfisher a popular beer brand in India. Nothing else'


"The classic one is that of changing the brand name of 'Indian Airlines' to 'Indian' and the communication blitz that ensued when it was almost put on process to merge it with Air India. The top management at the airline explained it as competition strategy!"  from; 'Social cost of flying Air India'


Reference Links:


Isn't the ministry of Civil Aviation guilty? Spice Jet turns the question serious

Social cost of flying Air India

Kingfisher a popular beer brand in India. Nothing else

Mating Kingfisher

Kingfisher Airlines. Cropping Feathers?

Flying hard with multiple branding flaws


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