Published on February 1st, 2017 | by Editor0
Gillette: The Branding Strategy
For many years, men had struggled with the quest to produce a clean-shaven chin or have a more attractive trim. It wasn’t until 1901, when King C. Gillette transformed shaving by inventing the first safety razor. In 1904, he successfully patented his product.
Ever since, the Gillette brand has evolved, providing innovative shaving solutions to the male grooming industry. Today, under the Procter & Gamble (P&G) company, Gillette has four flagship product lines; the Gillette Trac series and Sensor, MACH3, Fusion, and Fusion ProGlide. The brand is heavily invested in research and development, with two major centres in Boston, USA, and Reading, UK.
Gillette And Sports
Part of P&G’s strategy for the Gillette brand was aligning it with the sports industry. Gillette has a rich heritage in sports that seeks to promote the product as a performance brand. Since sports is a major passion for most men worldwide, sports marketing allows the Gillette brand connect strongly with its main target audience.
The Gillette brand has partnered with many sports men, including world-class athletes over the years. The brand’s association with sports dates as far back as the 1900s. Gillette had the foresight to see the value in tying the brand with important sporting personalities. At the time, they released a print ad for the Gillette Safety Razor, featuring baseball star Honus Wagner of the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Gillette has continued to maintain its relationships with the sports industry by increasing its involvement with major sporting events. It has sponsored the Major-League Baseball, NCAA Basketball, and Champions Tour to mention a few.
Even in the 1970s, Gillette sponsored global events like the FIFA World Cup and Formula One race. No doubt, Gillette’s continuous associations with these male-dominated sports events have produced a strong performance identity for the brand.
- Celebrity Endorsements
In 2004, Gillette signed an endorsement deal with football star, David Beckham. This symbolised a major development to Gillette’s sports branding direction. Not long after that, Beckham featured in the brand’s international consumer advertising and promotional campaigns. Other big sporting names with Gillette endorsements include Roger Federer, Tiger Woods, and Thierry Henry.
Gillette hasn’t been linked to sports alone. It is also known to sponsor TV shows like HBO’s True Blood, where a vampire endorsed the razor as the choice for the undead.
Other Branding Focus
Besides, sponsorship and endorsements, Gillette’s other branding efforts focus strongly on the product itself
- Extensive product line
The various product lines range from its Mach3 to the 5-bladed fusion line demonstrates that the brand understands the varying needs of its consumers. Each product offered something different for each skin type.
- Creates new use situations
Gillette convinces its consumers to use its products for lower body parts, as well as the chin. This strategy prolongs brand usage.
- Brand extension
Besides making innovative razors, Gillette has extended its services to other lucrative products such as hair creams, shave foams, shampoos, and so on.
Gillette continues to dominate its competitors by understanding its product’s key advantages and consumers’ needs. Other brands can definitely learn a lot from its branding strategy.