Friday, December 12, 2008

Corona Got Smart? Or Got Beached?

I think managing a brand is tough.

Like parenting it requires saying "no", sometime a lot.

Also like parenting, managing a brand requires you to accept the limitations of your brand.

Understanding allows you to not force fit your brand into the mainstream and allows your brand to maximize its full potential - even if maximizing your full potential means being happy with XX amount of sales, distribution, etc.

But once again the dreaded pressures of life and the human condition leads to change which sometimes is a miss step, sometimes.

Give the new site the "hand test".

You know put your hand over the beer bottle and see if this still feels like a Corona experience.

Or is it Heineken?  Amstel Light?  Bud Light for that matter?

Corona decided to evolve beyond the beach beer after years of feet, ocean and solid equity.

Is this own-able?  Differentiating in a relevant way?  Or did Corona just move into the general water-downed partying center?

Common cause of such change:

1) new management making "their mark"
2) sales pressure (think politics) pushes you to try to appeal to a broader audience
3) need to overcome new audience, business and/or brand situations

My advice?  Just make sure you change for the right reasons and you don't walk from brilliant equities established over many years.

Let's see how this plays for Corona.

Hopefully data-based insights led them to make this move (#3) and it will pay off.

Time will tell.

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