„Dockers: Creating a Sub-brand“ Report
How would you characterize Levi´s branding strategy in general?
Levi’s is a brand recognizable in the whole wide world. There is no person who wouldn’t be able to associate correctly the Name with the product. LS&Co has managed to create something timeless, just like their classical 501 blue jeans. Although their branding message was changing slightly during the time, they kept core values and traditions untouched. Comfort, uniqueness, quality and emotional impact – these were always the main associations with the brand. However, other features were being emphasized as time was going by. First connotations were simple: “jeans are tough and rugged as men who wear them”. This image of a 100% man was even strengthened after western movies appeared. Soon jeans, and so Levi’s brand which in people’s mind turned to be their synonymous, became a symbol of freedom, adventure and independence. In this moment, managers of LS&Co decided to expand the brand. Even though there where various new cloths introduced to the market – 501 jeans remained their top-selling product. It was their new brand strategy to “offer products for every life style”, which turned to be a fiasco. Not only it didn’t bring expected results, what is more, this to big diversification caused drops in sales. It was so decided to come back to the core product and it’s image. To strengthen the Levi’s position on a market, their launched a new campaign which emphasizes emotional connection between jeans and theirs owner. To wear 501 it is to be yourself – they said. Company also took the advantage of changes that started to appear according to the dress code at work place. In that times company accentuated 100% cotton in Levi’s jeans, as “baby boomer” who grew up were seeking for natural fibers. Now Levi’s brand is supposed to be seen as “a style for every story” – again emotional impact emphasized. But as we can see, although they stressed different features in different periods of time, LS&Co maintained core values which they stuck in people’s mind – quality, comfort, uniqueness and emotional impact.
Analyze the Dockers´communication strategy at the time of the launch. How did it fit in with Levi´s advertising efforts?
How did it contribute to brand equity?
Dokers brand was introduced by Levi’s to contrast the change that was happening to blue jeans buyers. In fact, customer who were teenagers in the 50’s were becoming a target of about 25-49 years old and they were moving out of the jeans market. So Dokers brand was born to satisfy those buyers with a new product, which utilized the comfort and casual feel of cotton; The response from consumers was so good that it made Dokers become a billion-dollar brand by 1993. Subsequently young consumer took distance from Dokers jeans because they started to see them like “their fathers wore”, so Levi’s developed new advertising campaigns and introduced new Dokers sub-brands. LS&Co wanted to give Dokers an image of comfortable and relaxing pants, an alternative to traditional dressing for almost every occasion by an advertising challenge. This new image had to be related to Levi’s image, giving an advantage to all the company, not only to Dokers. Moreover, managers wanted to keep in mind of people the connection between Dokers and Levi’s brands - consumers had to know that a Dokers pant was produced by Levi’s and that they had the same features, the same quality. In the summer of 1993 Levi’s unveiled its Dokers Authentics brand, in the hope of attracting a younger and more style-conscious type of customer. It gave a refreshment to the old brand by a new label with more style. The launch of Dokers Wrinkle-Free signed a turning-point for the company supported by a $40 million advertising campaign attended later by another campaign called: “Nice Pants”.It differed from the usual image that Levi’s wanted to give to their consumers, based only on...
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