The purpose of this presentation is to provide a deeper understanding of Philip Morris‘ strategic efforts behind building Marlboro into a successful global brand. Key strategic decisions from the past as well as characteristics of the current global brand strategy are highlighted in this context.
INTERNATIONAL MARKETING MarlboroGlobal Marketing Strategy Surgeon General‘s Warning: Smoking kills. 20 CLASS A CIGARETTES
Purpose of this presentation: To provide a deeper understanding of Philip Morris‘ strategic efforts behind building Marlboro into a successful global brand by highlighting key strategic decisions from the past as well as characteristics of the current global brand strategy.
1. IntroductionAGENDA 2. Short Brand History 3. Marlboro Goes Global 4. Current Brand Strategy 5. Global Marketing Mix Product Promotion Price Place 6. Conclusions
INTRODUCTION world‘s best-selling cigarette brand (300 bill. units sold in 180 countries) world‘s most profitable non-durable consumer good flagship brand of Philip Morris, the world‘s largest cigarette manufacturer
INTRODUCTION 18th „Most Valuable Brand in the World“ (Interbrand ranking 2011, net value: 20 bill. $) most recognized and appealling brand image of the 20th century: Marlboro Man and Marlboro Country Marlboro Man – symbol of the true American spirit and American way of life marketing tool with unprecedented success
SHORT BRAND HISTORY introduced in the 1920s in the U.S. by Philip Morris, named after Maroborough Street in London different positioning before and after World War II 1955 Leo Burnett repositions the brand to appeal to both male and female smokers – „The Tattooed Man“ image campaign, later „The Marlboro Cowboy“ 1963 – extension with „The Marlboro Country“ theme
SHORT BRAND HISTORY Marlboro in the 1920s and 1950s
SHORT BRAND HISTORY next decades global expansion and positioning as a global brand reasons by 1972 no. 1 tobacco brand in the world 1993 „Marlboro Friday“ 1996 first tobacco product in the Marketing Hall of Fame, together with Coca-Cola, Walt Disney, Nike, etc.
MARLBORO GOES GLOBAL global expansion: „a mixture of organic growth, geographical expansion and acquisitions“ 1950s – first sales organizations and production facilites outside the U.S., 1955 – Philip Morris Overseas today: production sites in 56 countries, sales subsidiaries in 150 countries, sales in 180 countries licensing agreements, joint ventures with local producers, privitazation of state-owned tobacco factories
MARLBORO GOES GLOBAL core strategic concept: „to sell a marketable version of the American West or the American Dream“ to consumers worldwide find a global target segment and approach it through a standardized marketing and advertising approach: export of the Marlboro Man and Marlboro Country theme highly successful approach but not in every market example of Hong Kong
MARLBORO GOES GLOBAL Several decisive success factors: PMI‘s position as a strong U.S. corporation increased global popularity of Western movies effective global market research efforts to identify a global consumer group with similar values and attributes Marlboro as part of „the global mass culture“
CURRENT GLOBAL STRATEGY Specific tobacco industry characteristics: high homogeneity of products, differentiation only through branding and marketing high concentration with 5 major players: PMI, BAT, JTI, IT, RJ Reynolds many restrictions and regulations, public awareness
CURRENT GLOBAL STRATEGY target: global community of young adult smokers USP: high-quality American style cigarettes focus: growth segments of each market and new opportunities for growth advantages: strong global brand image and high recognition despite restrictions on advertising
CURRENT GLOBAL STRATEGY a superior, highly diversified product line a commitment to quality the use of global media channels and global events reasonable and affordable pricing constant product innovation an aggressive distribution strategy corporate social responsibility
CURRENT GLOBAL STRATEGY Marlboro has a tradition of being the industry’s innovator examples: the flip-top box, cork looking filters, slow burning paper, slide packs, etc. Filter Plus Technology: a revolutionary, flavor enhancing, four-chamber filter system
MARKETING MIX: PRODUCT high degree of standardization with carefully selected adaptations to local preferences positioned worldwide as a high quality product in the premium segment 2008 launch of the new Marlboro Brand Architecture to broaden the target market
NEW BRAND ARCHITECTURE Flavor Line Gold Line Fresh Line
MARKETING MIX: PRODUCT Brand Architecture Product Innovations packaging upgrades (Marlboro Red Filter Filter Plus Technology Plus Slide Pack) and many line extensions for individual markets Marlboro Intense (shorter, rich-flavored cigarette) quality improvements new menthol products (Crisp, Fresh and appealling and sophisticated design – Ice Mint, mainly for the Asian market) and promotional function of packaging kretek or clover cigarettes
MARKETING MIX: PROMOTION predominantly standardized with some local adaptations, strict ethical code shift from traditional channels to alternative ones due to restrictions on tobacco advertising use of global media channels: Internet sponsorship of global events: Formula 1 Ferrari Team, Ducati Motor Racing Team
MARKETING MIX: PROMOTION “switch-selling” and “buy one, get one for free” activities performed by local sales force online promition: discounts, coupons, birthday gifts, concert tickets, competitions with prizes for registered members Marlboro Club: uniting smokers who love Marlboro cigarettes, maintain brand loyalty
MARKETING MIX: PRICE highly adapted , due to different taxation, income levels and competitive situations, positioned as a premium brand in the upper price segments across all markets however, affordable pricing strategy to attract smokers “sell-low strategy” high disparities (6$ in U.S. versus 79 cents in Senegal for Marlboro Red) critique due to large market share, Marlboro can “set” prices of the industry (1993 worldwide price-cut to protect market share)
MARKETING MIX: PLACEMENT highly adapted to local conditions , due to differently restricted access to distribution channels across markets example: U.S. – supermarkets, convenience stores, gas stations, discount stores versus Austria – only in tobacco shops common characteristic: maximum distribution coverage and top shelf space to emphasize brand superiority effective sales force, takes advantage of large market share, builds strong relationships with retailers
CONCLUSIONS Marlboro’s exceptional success as a global brand is the result of: a carefully planned and implemented global expansion strategy effective market research to identify a global consumer segment a strong brand image to appeal to this global consumer group (Marlboro Man) an optimal mix between standardization and adaptation across markets past challenges like: health warning labels, marketing constraints, public scandals, legal lawsuits, etc. were mastered successfully
CONCLUSIONS rapidly changing tobacco industry environment many future challenges like: increased taxes on cigarette sales, introduction of plain packaging, ban on various ingredients, product display bans in retail stores Marlboro and Philip Morris need to find new and innovative ways to address these challenges and maintain global market leadership
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