Club Med is France’s largest travel and tourism company, founded in 1950. It was the first company to offer all-inclusive vacation packages, which have become the fastest growing segment within the tourism sector. By year 2000, Club Med’s competition had become intense, and Club Med needed to refresh its image.
Club Med’s concept had become outdated, even though it had more than 100 resort villages in some of the most gorgeous locations in the world, visited by 1.5 million guests each year, explained John Vanderslice President & CEO of Club Med America, a division of Club Méditerannée, at the ATME annual conference in Baltimore this past May. Club Med, as a brand had a high recognition level, but its positioning lacked clarity, Vanderslice said. "The pricing was perceived as too expensive, and building loyalty and winning new customers had become much harder."
Club Med needed to renovate many of its villages, revamp its information
systems, and deal with other financial, management and legal issues, he said. "In short, we had to change everything, but …. keep everything the same." In 1997, Club Mediterannée named a new chairman of its board, Philippe Bourguignon, and assembled a new management team, which included Vanderslice.
First, the company conducted a brand analysis to determine what originally had made Club Med so successful, then developed a plan that would strengthen its core values and essential qualities that set it apart from competition.
The company coined a new slogan, "Do it now, do it fast, and do everything at the same time," Vanderslice said. "The new Club Med team hit the ground running, rethinking our product, regaining price competitiveness, improving sales, and re-engineering many of our operations," Vanderslice recalled.
To strengthen and reposition the brand, Club Med decided to:
o Renovate villages, spending more than $150 million just in North America.
o Increase spending on marketing, and focus on new... [continues]
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