Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Catholicism as a Religious Brand

When we say there are few words that control the way we live like the brand word, we are not dealing with exaggeration says the  opinion  columnist in the Peace Weekly. When we want the news, we look for KBS, MBC, SBC,  or one of our favorite channels. A cup of coffee similarly has a brand name attached. A sick person looks for the brand name of their hospital. Students look for their college brand, and we look for the business enterprises and their brand products.

This brand thinking also enters the cultural world of our thinking. When we are looking for services and products, the providers use all the means available to show us why their brands are superior to others. The competition is fierce.

True also, he says, in the world of religion.Those religions that use this information will do a better job in bringing others into their fold. He explains why this is the time for the Religious Brand.

First, brand is a mark of identity, legitimacy, uniqueness, a marketing word that distinguishes it from all the competition.  Catholic,  Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Protestantism, etc. each one has an identity, and uniqueness which it stresses in  its propagation.This is a reason that makes for the branding of the religions.

Secondly, the  world is the big market for all these religions. Of the 7 billion inhabitants 6 billion 200 million have a religion. This makes the religions competitors in finding followers. Which of the brands will they want to accept?

Thirdly, propagating, we ask people to choose. Our society does not take to absolute authority, there is a strong tendency in not being impressed with traditional authority. We see this in politics, finances, society, education and of course in religion. In the past, the emotional, collective, and traditional was out front, today it is the intellect, the individual and the situation in which we find ourselves.

The companies that are successful study the actions of the consumers, the values they seek. The company is not at the center but the consumer; the development of their services and products is determined by what the consumer needs, and their brand is there to answer their need. Because of this,  religion can no longer go out and say; 'believe in God, believe in Allah, believe in Buddha'.  The potential believers of the future need to be attracted to what is being offered, and will choose accordingly.

People of the  present age will choose a religion that meets their tastes. This kind of thinking gives rise to choosing of brands, the new trend.The traditional religions avoided the language of the market place, marketing,  brands, management and the like; evangelization was a different way of making the message known. But according to the columnist we are in the 'brand age' and  people will select the brand of religion that meets their taste.

Catholicism is a brand that promises happiness. The  product is easily tested for we have many examples of those who have lived the life and are good billboards for the teaching. The brand is easy to examine and analyze, and although we have members saying and doing things differently it is not difficult to determine who speaks for the brand. In the study of the  brand one can ascertain quickly whether it answers the longings of  our hearts or not.  Making a  judgement, in the present age, of the authenticity of the brand and what it offers, one has all the necessary information available on the Internet, if one has the patience, a desire to search for truth, and the wisdom to discern.

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