My last post regarding BMW’s new campaign resulted in a few conversations with colleagues that were interesting and got me thinking about the challenges associated with marketing a global automotive brand and the concept of a global campaign.
Virtually every automotive brand is global. Not every brand is marketed in every country but I can’t think of any that are sold only in their country of origin. That means that every manufacturer must be concerned with what their respective brands stand for in each country in which they are distributed. Obviously, it is in the manufacturers’ interest to have their brands positioned in the same way from country to country. Customers and prospects should recognize the brands no matter where in the world they come into contact with them.
Of course the real world is not quite this neat and tidy. Brands have developed in different ways in different countries, so for some manufacturers it’s a challenge just to get their colleagues around the world on the same page regarding the brand’s core values. In my experience we do pretty well when we concern ourselves with the strategic underpinnings of the brand, where things fall apart is when execution of the strategy is considered.
There seem to be two basic approaches to execution, each with its own set of plusses and minuses: