What the f... is the difference? You might ask. The question was also raised this weekend in Oslo at the 11.th International Conference on Corporate Reputation, Brand, Identity and Competitiveness by Dr. Kevin Money. More specifically he asked: Where does Brand end and Reputation begin? In short Dr. Moneys answer was that the Brand is what the company wishes to be experienced as by the costumers and stakeholders - and Reputation is what the costumers and stakeholders in fact experience the company to be. Dr. Money stated that you can own your Brand but you can't own what people feel about it (Reputation). As some of the listeners pointed out you could argue that it is not relevant to distinguish between what is Brand and what is Reputation - it's two sides of the same coin. But the reason why I think Dr. Money raised the question and the reason why it is important to distinguish between the two concepts become clear when you work with these concepts in practice. The clients want to know if the brand management activities work or not. Which brand activities are effective in the sense of having a positive impact on the Reputation of the company.
This is just a brief of one of many interesting discussions which took place at the conference in Oslo this weekend. Feel free to write a comment about your understanding on Brand vs. Reputation. Or maybe you think the differentiation is irrelevant? If so I would love to be let in on your reasoning.