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TABLE OF CONTENTS
S. No. TITLE Page No.
1 Acknowledgement 2
2 Executive Summary 3
3 Purpose and Scope 4
4 Introduction 5
5 Literature Review 6
6 Methodology 7
7 Data Analysis and Findings 8
8 Conclusion 11
9 Recommendations 12
10 Limitations 13
11 A) Appendix-1 14
11 B) Appendix-2 17
12 References 21


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1. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This project was an effort to investigate the relationship between the brands and the perceptions
of the people. The focus of the research was to understand:
a) Various factors that affect a persons brand consciousness and preferences
b) Effects of brands on decision making
c) The perceptions that a person develops about others based on the brands of the
accessories that they wear

An extensive research was conducted by floating a questionnaire that covered various aspects of
the above mentioned points. The different aspects that were covered are as follows:
a) Preference of brands over price and features
b) Relationship between the age group, profession and a persons tendency to form
stereotypes of particular brands
c) The relative importance of various factors like income level, native place and educational
background in the perceptions formed on basis of brands

The key findings include:
a) Professionals (Age group >26), compared to the students, are more inclined towards
judging others on the basis of brands.
b) Brands affect peoples perception about income status more than about other factors such
as family and educational background.





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2. PURPOSE AND SCOPE
The purpose of this project is to analyze the various perceptions that can be created by different
brands. There are various factors that affect the perception of a person in selecting or rejecting a
specific brand. Cultural background of a person greatly influences his/her purchasing decision. A
persons inclination towards a particular brand is also influenced by his influencers like family,
friends, peers etc.
This project aims to analyze the various perceptions of a person that can be drawn on the basis of
the brands that he wears. What we are trying to analyze through this report is whether the
awareness of brands affects purchase decisions. What we are also trying to deduce is the
preference of brand over price and the different perceptions of person that are drawn on the basis
of the brands of apparels that he chooses to wear.
Though the scope of this project is very vast, we have limited it to approximately 120 members.
We have tried to record the responses of people with diverse occupations, backgrounds and age
groups. On the basis of the responses given by these people to our survey, we have tried to draw
a conclusion on the perception that people often make based on the brands used by a person.
The purpose of the project is to capture the relationship between the brands and perceptions.
Whenever a person sees notices other person using a branded product, he unconsciously
categorizes him as belonging to a particular class of people. He develops perceptions about
various factors like income level, family background, educational background etc.
The scope of the project includes:
a) Various factors that affect a persons brand consciousness and preferences
b) Effects of brands on decision making
c) The perceptions that a person develops about others based on the brands of the
accessories that they wear




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3. INTRODUCTION
A wide gamut of information about a person can be deduced through non-verbal communication.
We can determine the income, family background, occupation, city of residence and other such
nuances of a person through non-verbal communication. In the era of globalization and
westernization, people are becoming increasingly brand-conscious. There are various brand-
centric decisions and perceptions in the minds of people. Many-a-time, the awareness of brands
encourages or discourages a person to purchase a particular product.
There are various factors that affect the perception of a person in selecting or rejecting a specific
brand. Cultural background of a person greatly influences his/her purchasing decision. A
persons inclination towards a particular brand is also influenced by his influencers like family,
friends, peers etc.
Through our project, we are trying to analyze the various perceptions of a person that are drawn
on the basis of the brands that he wears. What we are trying to analyze through this report is
whether brands affects decision making. What we are also trying to deduce is the preference of
brand over price and the different perceptions of person that are drawn on the basis of the brands
of apparels that he chooses to wear.










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4. LITERATURE REVIEW
What is Brand? Brand is the name, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one
product distinct from other. On the other hand, brand awareness is the degree to which
consumers in the marketplace are familiar with particular brands and how successful the
producer has been in influencing consumer choices. Small businesses generally have the
disadvantage compared with larger competitors, which have created their brands over the years
by investing millions of dollars in advertising. Brand experiences and value proposition are
developed over time through a variety of sources, and it has a number of distinct effects on
consumers' perceptions including:
Quality:
Consumers generally have a tendency to expect higher quality from highly advertised brandsthan
generic products.
Relationship Value:
A brand communicates its promise to customers that firm will be able to respond the customers
present and future needs.

Availability:
Highly advertised brands are most often widely distributed, creating a psychological association
between well-known brands and easy availability.
Experience:
Brand is a product in itself as it can be experienced. It acts as a perceptual frame that highlights
particular benefits delivered by the product.

Reputation Value and Niche Identification:
Every brand has a reputation associated to it. Niche brands with a high level of brand awareness
build a sense of distinguished identity with specific consumer groups. They are seen as powerful
marker of expressing pride, status, lifestyle, politics, and a variety of social identities. This is
where one group of people using a particular segment of brand starts differentiating people using
other brands and symbolic value become conventionalized in a brand culture.

Every individual has a brand and a major of this is built from his or her own behavior,
appearance and brand awareness. Ones personal brand is a perception held in others minds, and
it has evolved through their interactions with one.
In other words, people are constantly observing who you are, what you do, and how you do it.
Having a brand is not the point: more important is the question, how strong is your personal
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brand? It is a quite a perception among the people that your personal brand grows or weakens
depending upon the consistent impact you make on individuals by the brands you use. This
whole project and research is an effort to verify this notion.

5. METHODOLOGY
We adopted research and survey based techniques to study the human behavior about how they
perceive brands as an identity. A sample survey was conducted on 110 plus people and a similar
set of questions were asked to them. The questions were formed in a fashion to bring out the
perception that these people have about various brands and about the people who use them. An
online form was created and floated on social networking sites to record the responses.
A detailed analysis of the responses was done based on gender and age group. The data was
analyzed using MS-Excel and various pie charts and graphs were drawn which helped to draw
the significant conclusions.












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6. DATA ANALYSIS AND FINDINGS
A total of 112 responses were obtained which included 53 Male responses and 59 Female
responses. Forty seven percent of the respondents were male while fifty three percent were
females.
The following trends were observed:
a) Category of Brands (Ref. Appendix-2 Exhibit b)
While 74 percent of the respondents use Mid to High Category Brands, only 4 percent of
respondents use Premium brands.
The percentage of male users using Mid to High Category Brands is higher than that of female
users.
Though women prefer Mid to High value brands, many of them also prefer Premium and Low to
Mid value brands.

b) Brand Awareness
Average Brand Awareness: 3.30
Male Brand Awareness: 3.20
Female Brand Awareness: 3.41
These figures indicate that the brand awareness of females is more than that of males.
Brand awareness of age group greater than or equal to 26: 3.5
Brand awareness of age group less than 26: 3.29
Thus the brand awareness of people of age group>=26 which include professionals is greater
than that of people of age group < 26 which mostly include students.

c) Preference of Brands over Price (Ref. Appendix-2 Exhibit c)
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While 50 percent of the users occasionally prefer brands over prices, 24 percent never prefer
brands over price.
The figures show that almost half of the people are not particular about brands and may prefer
cheaper products to branded products depending on circumstances.

d) Preference of Brands over Features (Ref. Appendix-2 Exhibit d)
While 60 percent people never prefer brands over features, 18 percent sometimes prefer brands
over features.
The figures indicate that most of the people (around 69%) prefer features over the brand value.

e) Brands as Status Symbols (Ref. Appendix-2 Exhibit e)
More than 85 percent people relate Brand with the status and recognition in the society.

f) Preference of International Brands over Domestic Brands (Ref. Appendix-2
Exhibit f)
45 percent people are indifferent to International or National Brands. The percentage of people
who prefer International brands (31%) is more than those who prefer National brands (24%).
34 percent women prefer International brands as compared to 19 percent women who prefer
Domestic brands.
28 percent men prefer International brands as compared to 30 percent men who prefer Domestic
brands.
The pie charts reflect that women prefer International Brands to Domestic Brands while the case
is reverse for the men.

g) Noticing the Brands (Ref. Appendix-2 Exhibit g)
While 35 percent people always notice brands, only 15 percent people never notice the Brands
others are using.50 percent people sometimes notice brands based on circumstances.

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h) Categories of Products where brands matter most (Ref. Appendix-2 Exhibit h)

80 percent people notice the brands of clothes others wear and 82 percent people notice their
watches.80 percent people are very particular about the brands of the gadgets others use. Thus
brands are most noticeable in the Cloths, Watches and Gadgets Segment.
i) Perception about others based on the brands they use (Ref. Appendix-2 Exhibit i)
While 55 percent people form perceptions about others based on the brands they use,45 percent
never form any such perception.
27 percent professionals (age group greater than 26) always form perceptions based on brands as
compared to 4 percent students.
This shows professionals are more inclined towards judging others based on brands than the
students as shown by the below figures

j) Categories of Perceptions based on Brands (Ref. Appendix-2 Exhibit j)
87 percent people form perceptions about income status based on brands. Around 40 percent
people also form perceptions about professions, native cities and family backgrounds based on
brands.
Thus, brands affect peoples perception about income status more than about other factors such
as family and educational background.









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7. CONCLUSION
Based on the analysis of the data, following conclusions were drawn about the relationship
between brands and perceptions.
a) Men are generally more confined to mid to high category brands as compared to their
female counterparts.
b) The brand awareness of women is more than that of men. Similarly the brand awareness
of working professionals is more than that of students.
c) Most of the people are not particular about brands and may choose cheap products also
depending on the circumstances. Very few people always prefer brands over price.
d) Majority of the people do not consider brand value when it comes to better features. Thus
majority of them are feature-driven and not brand-driven.
e) Almost all the people consider brand a status symbol in the society.
f) Most of the people are indifferent to International or National Brands. However, women,
compared to men, are more inclined towards International brands.
g) Around 85 percent people notice the brands which others are using especially in clothes,
gadgets and watches segment.
h) Almost fifty percent of the people form perceptions about others based on the Brands
they use. Professionals (age group greater than 26) are more inclined towards judging
others based on brands than the students.
i) Brands affect peoples perception about various factors like income status, family
background, educational background etc. but the effect on perception about income status
is more than on other factors.








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8. RECOMMENDATIONS
Stereotyping or forming perceptions based on the brands is a form of perceptual error which
leads to following problems:
a) It over generalizes and does not represent everyone in the society
b) It is a basis of intentional discrimination in the society

Although it is hard to prevent stereotype activation, one must make a conscientious effort
to minimize stereotype application. The following strategies can help in elimination of
biases on the basis of brands:

a) Awareness of Perceptual biases based on brands
The sight of a Gucci bag or Prada shoes makes our eyes pop out in amazement. When
we see a person who is the owner of such premium segment brands, we start forming
various perceptions about him. These perceptions are the barriers to effective and
constructive communication. Our survey shows that people generally form
perceptions about a persons economic status on the basis of the brands that he
chooses to wear. However, it is imperative for us to realize that brands do not convey
any information about the nature of a person. People form perceptions of a persons
nature when they first see him based on his attire. It is this perception that needs to be
changed. Every individual needs to be aware of the fact that the choice of brands does
give an idea of a persons lifestyle. However, it is not the economic background that
matters for effective communication. What does matter is the ability of a person to
convey his thoughts and emotions in the most concise yet effective way. As long as
this purpose is fulfilled, economic status or status symbols are secondary. So, we
recommend that every person must be aware of the fact that our perceptions are
biased with respect to brands. However, the choice of brands is definitely not a
measure to judge the person or his/her communication skills.


b) Meaningful Interaction
We may be biased towards the choice of apparels of a person. There are several
instances when we refrain from talking to a person based on the perceptions that we
draw on the basis of his brand choice or brand awareness. Many-a-time, we are
skeptical to communicate with a person because we perceive him to be from a low
economic background or from a rural region. These pre-conceived notions about
people are barriers to effective and constructive communication. Effort needs to be
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made on the part of every individual to overcome these misconceptions about people.
Close and frequent interaction between two people can help in the elimination of
these biases.
10. LIMITATIONS
The survey was conducted on only 112 people. This sample may not be an accurate
representation of the population.

Most of the people surveyed were in the age group of 20-30 years. Thus, the result may
be biased towards young generations perceptions.

Most of the people surveyed were educated people including students and professionals
and the survey only partially captured others.

As the survey was conducted using social networking sites, there is no data available
about the involvement and the seriousness of people while filing the forms.

As most of the sample population was from cities, we did not have adequate data to show
the perception of the rural population.

Since most of the respondents were students, we could not notice any peculiar trend of
people from a particular income group.

Lack of self awareness among the respondents may lead to erroneous results.









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11. A) APPENDIX-1: Form Floated
Survey on "How Brands Create Perception"
* Required
Name *
e.g. James Bond 007

This is a required question
Age *
e.g. 32

Gender *
Male
Female
City *
e.g. Mumbai

Occupation *
e.g. Spy

Annual Income Range(in Rs.)
100000-250000
250000-400000
400000-750000
Above 750000
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1. What category of brands do you generally use? *
Premium/Luxury [ Zara, Armani,Louis Philippe, LOreal, Gucci]
Mid to High [ Levis, Adidas, Wrangler]
Low to Mid [ Big Bazar, Local shoppers, etc]

2. How much do you think you are aware of latest brands? *
Rate yourself on a scale of five, where 1 = Not aware, 5 = Very much aware

3. Do you prefer brands over price? *
e.g.- A Levi's T-shirt over a cheper but equally good T-Shirt
Yes
No
Sometimes

4. Do you prefer brands over performance or features? *
e.g. - Apple i4 over Samsung S 3
Yes
No
Sometimes

5. Do you think brands are status symbol? *
Yes
No

6. Do you prefer international brands over domestic brands? *
e.g. Arrow Shirt or Wills Lifestyle Shirt
Yes
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No
It does not matter

7. When you meet people, do you notice the brands they are wearing? *
Yes
No
Sometimes

8. In what all categories do you notice brands? *
Clothing
Jewelry
Shoes
Watch
Goggles
Perfume
Hand bag /purse
Gadgets
It does not matter
Other:

9. Do you judge people based on the brand they use? *
Always
Sometimes
Never

10. What all kinds of perceptions do you form in your mind based on the brand people
use? *
e.g. A person using Gucci must be rich or a person using iPad must be educated
Income Status
Educational background
Cities they belong to
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Profession
Family Background
It does not matter
Other:
APPENDIX-2 : Exhibits
a) Distribution of respondents on the basis of Gender


b) Category of Brands









Category Total Users Male Users Female Users
Premium/luxury 5 (4%) 1 4
Mid to High 84 (74%) 42 41
Low to Mid 24 (21%) 10 14

c) Preference of Brands over Price
Male 53 47%
Female 60 53%
Yes 29 26%
No 27 24%
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d) Preference of Brands over Features



e) Brands as Status Symbols



Sometimes 56 50%
Yes 25 22%
No 67 60%
Sometimes 20 18%
Yes 96 86%
No 16 14%
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f) Preference of International Brands over Domestic Brands




g) Noticing the Brands



h) Categories of Products where brands matter most
Clothing 90 Watch 92 Hand bag /purse 51
Jewelry 13 Goggles 48 Gadgets 90
Shoes 80 Perfume 37 It does not matter 3

i) Perception about others based on brands they use
Yes 35 31%
No 27 24%
It does not matter 50 45%
Yes 39 35%
No 17 15%
Sometimes 56 50%
Always 7 6%
Sometimes 55 49%
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j) Categories of Perceptions based on Brands
Income Status 87
Educational background 28
Cities they belong to 43
Profession 43
27%
64%
9%
Above 26 years
Always Never Sometimes
4%
43%
53%
Age Below 26
Always Never Sometimes
Never 50 45%
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Family Background 40
It does not matter 13
Other 5








12. REFERENCES
Marketing Management-Philip Kotler 12/08/2013
http://smallbusiness.chron.com/brand-awareness-affects-perception-11388.html
15/08/2013
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brand 18/08/2013
Organizational Behavior :McShane, Von Glinow and Sharma 20/08/2013