Firms lag in branding, have potential: strategist


TAIPEI–Taiwanese companies are lagging behind their counterparts in Japan, South Korea and even Singapore in terms of brand building, but they have a great potential to catch up in this regard, according to a visiting brand strategist.

“Taiwanese companies have great innovation and products, but someone has to put the leadership and strategy in place,” said Martin Roll, a Singapore-based author and lecturer.

Taiwan used to be known for its original equipment manufacturing and original design, but now it is time for Taiwanese companies to move on to the next level on the value chain, Roll told CNA by telephone.

Taiwanese brands, unlike Japanese, South Korean or Singaporean ones, are very quiet, under-performing, and do not really make a mark on the global market, he added.

Taiwan does have some brands, the expert said, but added that they are not very well known, with consumers finding it hard to answer questions like what those brands mean, what they can offer or what they stand for.

Asked if Taiwanese brands should have bigger promotions or more campaigns and resources for marketing, Roll said: not necessarily. “It might just be the way to do things,” he explained.

Brand building is more than strong marketing, Roll said, adding that companies need more profound changes, especially in terms of strong leadership.

However, while Taiwanese brands seem to lag behind others on a global scale, they can definitely catch up, Roll said.

“Taiwan has everything ahead of it. As long as you use your strength to become stronger, there’s great opportunity,” he added.