n. The brand landscape; the expanse of brands and brand-related items within a culture or market.
Marketing scholars such as John Sherry of Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill. and Grant McCracken of Harvard University in Cambridge note that not only do we inhabit a world full of brands, a ''brandscape,'' but that these are critically important providers of cultural meaning in our lives. A great many of our consumption decisions are based on assumptions about what is appropriate or inappropriate to consume.
GM must retire one division to better manage its domestic brands. I suggest Olds, the GM marque that stands for the least and whose products are lost in the brandscape.
The processes used by marketers to attempt to singularize, and occasionally sacralize, a commodity so it becomes a differentiated, branded product have been described (Gardner and Levy 1955; Levitt 1984; Levy 1978). Processes that allow brands to function in unison on the social level as a constellation (Solomon and Assael 1987) to communicate status or on the cultural level as a brandscape (Sherry 1986b) to form a significant part of the built environment (Rapaport 1982) have been explored only recently.
This word appears to have been coined by John Sherry (referenced in the first example citation). The earliest citation indicates that the word was used in a 1986 paper written by Sherry, which may have been "Cereal Monogamy: Brand Loyalty as a Secular Ritual in Consumer Culture," a paper presented at the annual conference of the Association for Consumer Research, held in Toronto, Canada back in October 1986.