Can retailers build brand equity by themselves?

I argue on a recent RetailWire post (below) that retailers are not nearly as adept as branded vendors at building equity through emotional engagement of the consumer:

Brands are better at emotional engagement than retailers, and this has been the case for a long time. While there are exceptions like Nordstrom, most retailers are unwilling to do the heavy lifting needed to turn satisfied customers into committed ones. The perfect example is the large number of so-called “loyalty programs,” which are really focused on price incentives instead of true loyalty.

Not every CPG company is equally adept at building brand equity, but most of them put retailers to shame. Retailers’ move toward more private and exclusive brands is just complicating this issue.

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