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What is a brand?

In its strictest definition, a brand is a symbol, sign, name or identifying mark that distinguishes an organization, company or product from its competitors. For the Shelby brand, these include elements such as Shelby American, Shelby Automobiles, Cobra and GT350, among many others. Like most other brands, these symbols and names have a trademark to prevent unlicensed use.

In a more general sense, the concept of a brand becomes increasingly abstract. This is because the broader definition of a brand can be extended to include a wide range of intangible and not so easily defined elements: the feeling that a company invokes in consumers; the values or attributes associated with a company; and the legacy and legacy associated with a company.

What is a brand?

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What is branding?

What is branding?

Branding is a component of marketing and a vital part of any smart company’s business strategy. It is the specific application of marketing resources in order to create a unique and own-able market position and market perception. These activities generally support larger, more strategic business objectives designed to create clear and visible competitive differentials that make one company and its products stand apart from its competitors.

Branding marshals a company’s tangible (names, symbols, etc.) and intangible assets (values, heritage, etc.) and packages them in such a way that it positively influences consumer perceptions related to the brand and its products. Its objectives often include creating and reinforcing both a functional benefit (i.e. go really fast) with an emotional benefit (i.e. look really cool while doing it).

These real or perceived functional and emotional benefits in turn drive consumer brand awareness—I am familiar with Shelby vehicles; brand loyalty—I only buy Shelby vehicles; and advocacy—I tell my friends to buy Shelby vehicles. Thus, effective branding creates real value for a business by creating consumer recognition and driving product sales.

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Shelby, the brand.

The Shelby brand has been in the marketplace for over 40 years and consists of some of the world’s most recognizable and most copied symbols. It is recognized worldwide, from Japan to Russia and all points in between. First developed in 1962, the brand’s original logos, marks and symbols include the Cobra medallion, the CS logo, the GT350 and GT500 script side emblems, the corporate letterhead and Carroll Shelby’s signature among many, many others.

The brand and its constituent marks remained largely unchanged until 1982 when Carroll’s collaboration with Chrysler necessitated a refresh of the CS logo to bring it into alignment with the contemporary target market.

Shelby, the brand.

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