Red Bull Case : Digital Marketing

Topics: Marketing, Marketing plan, Marketing strategy Pages: 11 (3434 words) Published: September 12, 2011
Online marketing : The Red Bull case



A closer look at Red Bull’s strategy

Red Bull’s customer base

Red Bull’s strategy

Red Bull marketing strategy

Red Bull’s online marketing

Leveraging the use of Internet and social media

When Red Bull tends to cross the line

How get Red Bull become even better?



Introduction : short review of Red Bull’s history 1

While travelling in Asia, the autrian business man and former marketing manager of Procter & Gamble Dietrich Mateschitz discovered the “tonic drinks” used by truck drivers and factory workers to stay awake and alert during their shifts. He immediately saw an opportunity to market those functionnal drinks outside Asia. Mateschitz approached the manufacturers of the drink, bought the foreign licensing rights in exchange for a 51% stake in his company, and launched the drink in Austria. That’s how the Red Bull company was founded in 1984. The drink was sold exclusively in Austria for five years and then spread into neighboring countries like Hungary and Slovenia, followed by Germany and Switzerland. It invaded the United States and Canada in 1997, and was authorized in France very recently.

A closer look at Red Bull’s strategy 2

Red Bull’s customer base

Many Red bull consumers are teenagers and young adults. But Red bull’s target group is not really determined by a demographic, but by a “state of mind”. Red Bull consumers want to be physically and mentally fit and wide awake. It can be young executives who want to face a more and more dynamic and demanding way of life. Or it can be teenagers who want to try new alcoholic mix, and be able to stay awake and to dance all night long. At least, it could be sportsmen who want to improve their performance, increase their physical endurance and boost their energy. These people are very hard to seduce because there are many brands competing on the market.

Figure 1 - Examples of competitive products

Red Bull’s strategy

The positionning of Red Bull is : It is the first stimulation drink, for both mind and body, to be used at any time, anywhere, by anyone, not only as a thirst-quencher but also as a cure against tiredness.

To build its brand equity, Red Bull developped an eye-catching logo : two bulls and a yellow sun, and an effective,“Red Bull gives you wiiiings”. Red Bull’s brand equity is mainly based on word of mouth, which gives the product a mystical image. Due to this myticism and the WOF strategy that build a very strong brand awareness, the product has a really strong “affect” with the customer, which leads to a bunch of rumors, good and bad ones.

The strategy Red Bull adopted is totally unusual. They did nod use traditionnal informative or persuasive communications and it restricted the drink’s supply. Red Bull used “buzz marketing” and “viral marketing”.

The company has divided the U.S. into eight decentralized sales units, each of which is handled on a city-by-city basis. Each unit creates distribution, makes sales calls and develops targeted marketing plans. Their mission is to find out where the target hangs out and what interests them. It's their job to get the message out to the right clubs and at the right events.

Their entry strategy is to seed happening places such as shops, clubs, bars and stores. They focus initially on opinion leaders who obtain positive direct experience with the brand. Once word of mouth has created a buzz about the product, they then widen distribution to areas surrounding the “in” spots. Markus Pichler, evp-strategic planning, Red Bull North America said "We go to on-premise accounts [vs. retailers] first, because the product gets a lot of visibility and attention. It goes faster to deal with individual accounts, not big chains and their authorization process.

Red Bull does a lot of sampling events in bars and night clubs. The brand also employs teams of...
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