Brand Management Class Notes- Nov 10
You need to have something that is very relevant to how people choose products. If you are
looking for a broker, you are looking at execution prices, execution services, and so on.
This is a …story, goes back to the late 80s, when it was launched in the US. The reason why it is
still inspiring is that this is a very strong brand. The question is how is the brand so strong?
When they entered the market in the US in 1979, the market share was 0, the brand that
dominated at that time was Stoyie, which had 80% then. Eight years, later, in 1988, Absolute had
a market share of 56%, Stony market share dropped from 80% to 30%, how did it manage to do
that? What was the pricing like then? Stony priced at 26 dollars per bottle, Smirnoff was 15.
Stony was clearly the lead in premium, and it had a premium price. Not snobbish, but definitely
How about the quality story? Is there anybody that says that Absolut was better because
the quality was better? It was a better tasting product? Not really, people don’t think so. They
actually had these taste tests in 1998, in in fact, Grey Goose got 96, Stonic got 91, and Absolut
only got 80 pts, so clearly not the taste story, there must be something else. So do you think the
advertising had something to do with this? Yes. What is it about the advertising that helped make
the brand dominant in the category? They associated themselves with artists, concerts, events,
fashion, music, things like that. How about we look at the ads, and see what it is about? [shows
ad]. I want you to think about how this makes me feel about the brand, what is the image,
personality when I put the ad on the screen. So what do you think? What words would you use to
describe the ads, the brand, how it makes you feel? It makes you feel cool and hip because their
advertising is so different and unique, very trendsetting, clever. The ads are clever, they are fun,
kind of like part of an inside joke, humorous yet sophisticated, they are witty,
you look at the ad,
you see the joke, you get it, you feel good, smart, right? The other question is, what kind of
people would this wit and sophisticated humor attract? Young people, educated, metropolitan.
Who are the type of people who buy Absolut Vodka? Look at exhibit 4B, p 19, What you are
looking at is a table of exactly the type of people who are most likely to …, basically you can say
“let me compare brand A with brand B.” you can look at the demographic profile, etc. What this
shows you is let’s compare the Absolut index numbers, 100 means there is no difference between
your brand versus the category average. The more the number, there is a skew, in this case, for
Absolut, the numbers are very high. For graduated college, 182. Let’s compare that with a low
priced Smirnoff, which is graduated college 116, attending college 164 to 124, let’s look at age.
189 for the youngest category, 137 for Smirnoff. Househould income, this was thirty years ago,