Branding professionals in Taiwan promoted on the "Smiling Curve" in the "2007 Taiwan Brands' Trend Forum"

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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Launch of the Taiwan Excellent Brand Association.
Image: Rico Shen.

As "Brand International Promotion Association" and "Taiwan Excellent Manufacturers' Association" merged to "Taiwan Excellent Brand Association" (TEBA), "2007 Taiwan Brands' Trend Forum", with the slogan of "Winning Global Economic with Taiwan Brands", held yesterday and invited professionals from governmental, financial, and IT industries to share experiences on marketing MIT (Made in Taiwan) brands and encourage MIT brands market to the world by innovations.

Newly-elected Chairman of TEBA Andy Tzu-jen Hsieh remarked in the opening: "A product with MIT brand didn't mean 'cheap' but 'value' of its good quality." With Hsieh's words, Minister of Economic Affairs of Taiwan Steve Ruey-long Chen echoed and said: "Self-made (MIT) brands were progressively refined with its innovations, R&D, and new ideas. Lots of good MIT brands became notable world-wide in the presence. But it's uncertain to determine success or failure when a company manages its brand because companies with small-business scale were grown up. A brand needs a long-period management to keep it in a good image."

The "Smiling Curve" by Stan Shih.
Image: Rico Shen.

Many participants and local media focused on the keynote speech by the founder of Multitech Stan Shih. He compared brands trend between Taiwan and other world-wide countries with "The World Is Flat" and proved the trend of optimization on global companies with his "Smiling Curve" theory. "We (the public) should determine a brand good or failure by its quality, nature, and notability but not its scale." Shih said and stressed, "Companies with MIT brands (OBMs) can't always be ODMs or OEMs because some (people) often confused on conceptions and basis of 'Branding Taiwan' and 'Taiwan Brands'. If a company need a good brand, it (a brand) should has its (brand owner's) creations and management strategies to mark it into the world in a good position."

"The brand trends in Taiwan is from ODM in the past to OEM commonly in the presence. But after some products by MIT companies were presented to the public, lots of MIT brands became world-class brands such as BenQ, Giant, Acer so that Taiwan can enter into the OBMs' era. If Taiwan can still be in the OBMs' era, the global market competitiveness and world-wide media exposure of MIT brands will be improved. 'OBMs in Taiwan' will help companies from several industries keep their headquarters retain in Taiwan." Tracy Chun-fang Hsu (Vice Director-general of the Bureau of Foreign Trade, Ministry of Economic Affairs of R.O.C.) mentioned in the forum.

Before the Panel Discussion, Jerry Wang (Vice Chairman of BenQ) corrected the difference between "Values" and "Value" with some quotes from Wikipedia. He said: "Value of a brand include values and consumers' value. A factor who determine consumers to buy a product or not is emotion or self-need. A brand's or a product's nature can be known with differences on consumers' population. Of course, in Taiwan or other world-wide countries, every self-made brand or product has its style, nature, and characteristics."

In the final of Panel Discussion, 3 main speakers think that "Smiling Curve" theory is a key factor to determine a company pursue its "brand value" success or failure. If a MIT brands wants to become world-class and notable, a company (brand owner) should not only have its creations, images, and innovations but also consider feelings from consumers.

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