Diesel SPA

Diesel for Successful Living: Branding Strategies for an Up-market Line Extension in the Fashion Industry (2008) INSEAD Case (Chandon and Grigorian)

Diesel SPA, number two casual wear company in Europe, known for irreverent and deeply ironic “for successful living” advertising campaign, is launching a new upmarket line: StyleLab. They need to decide on risk branding strategy: independent brand, endorsement (StyleLab by Diesel) or sub-branding (Diesel StyleLab).


JetBlue: Creating a Social Brand (2012) Stanford Graduate School of Business Case (Aaker and Schifrin)

In 2012 the New York-based airline JetBlue served 70 cities with 650 daily flights. JetBlue prided itself on being a fun, low-cost airline with high-quality customer service and popular amenities not found on other airlines. But while it had loyal frequent customers, the wider public did not understand JetBlue had a differentiated product. Also, the company had a tradition of treating everyone the same, which was an important part of its brand identity, but many passengers did not perceive JetBlue as a business airline. JetBlue was addressing these issues through human-centered marketing including humorous YouTube videos, an organizational structure designed for innovation, targeting customer interaction using social media, and authenticity and transparency. By detailing JetBlue’s successes and failures, the case provides students with a practical, real world example of how to create and grow a social brand. For its human-centered marketing, JetBlue used YouTube to launch multiple ads that spoke to its brand identity through humor. These ads resonated with people across the country, went viral, and attracted widespread media attention. JetBlue also designed for innovation, especially through the concept of “fast failing,” where ideas are tried quickly and cheaply ($5,000 -$10,000), and they either succeed or fail fast. If the ideas fail, the company moves on quickly to something else. One of these ideas turned into one of JetBlue’s most innovative and successful marketing promotions ever. JetBlue made a serious mistake in 2007 that damaged the company’s reputation. JetBlue tried to operate during a big storm, but ended up leaving passengers on planes on the tarmac for up to 11 hours without additional food or water being supplied to the planes. JetBlue’s CEO put up an on-line apology, which had over 400,000 views on YouTube and was the impetus for the company to start using social media on a large scale. JetBlue saw that customers were answering back to the YouTube video in the comment section, which created a scalable channel to have two-way communications with customers.

UnME Jeans: Branding in Web 2.0

UnME Jeans: Branding in Web 2.0 (2008) Harvard Business School Case (Thomas Steenburgh and Jill Avery)

This case introduces emerging Web 2.0 social media in virtual worlds, social networking sites, and video sharing sites, and encourages students to explore the opportunities and risks they present for brands. The case allows students to grapple with the strategic and tactical decisions that accompany marketing communications strategy and to combine information on consumer behavior with an understanding of brand objectives, in order to assess and evaluate new social media options. Brand manager Margaret Foley is facing an increasingly complex media environment in which her traditional media plan, focused on television, print, and radio advertising, has become less effective due to declining audiences, increased advertising clutter, and consumers tuning out. She is exploring emerging Web 2.0 social media options to determine if they can better achieve her branding and advertising objectives. Her challenge is to cut through all of the hype surrounding Web 2.0 and to analyze the social media’s potential for her brand by delving into the consumer needs and behaviors underpinning Web 2.0 technologies.

Launching the New MINI

Launching the New MINI (2004) Harvard Business School Case (Holt and Quelch)

Focuses on how strategy is transformed into creative branding materials. Reports on the development of a wide variety of brand communication materials produced to support the MINI launch in the United States. MINI USA executives worked with their ad agency Crispin Porter & Bogusky to develop these materials to address a variety of challenging strategic issues. Asks users to reverse-engineer the brand strategy from these documents.

Mountain Dew: Selecting New Creative

Mountain Dew: Selecting New Creative (2003) Harvard Business School Case (Holt)

The key role of selecting creative in brand communications, the problems with building a brand in a turbulent cultural environment, the challenges of extending an advertising campaign, and the senior management skills needed to interpret ads are highlighted.

Launching the BMW Z3 Roadster

Launching the BMW Z3 Roadster (2002) Harvard Business School Case (Fournier and Dolan)

James McDowell, vice president of marketing at BMW North America, Inc., must design Phase II communication strategies for the launch of the new BMW Z3 Roadster. The program follows an “out-of-the-box” prelaunch campaign centered on the placement of the product in the November 1996 James Bond hit movie, “GoldenEye”, and including other “nontraditional” elements such as a product appearance on Jay Leno’s Tonight Show, an offering of a Bond Edition Roadster in the Neiman Marcus Christmas Catalog, and large-scale public relations activities. McDowell must assess the effectiveness of the prelaunch activities and design marketing tactics that can sustain product excitement until product availability in March.