Case Study Of Branding Strategy At Vodafone

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REBRANDING STRATEGY AT VODAFONE
In its previous acquisitions, Vodafone had always gone through a 2-staged rebranding progress. They would first start with the local brand name like in this case they would have started with Vodafone-Hutch and then fade out Hutch completely in the second phase. However, given the expanse of the Indian telecom market such a step would have taken a long time before Vodafone could establish its own identity separate from that of Hutch, without losing out on leveraging the existing brand equity of Hutch. It seemed like a tricky situation.
The second element that had to be communicated was that while the name was changing the excellence of service would remain untouched. With these two very clear objectives, Vodafone
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It also continued with the Brand Personality of Hutch which was represented by a pug and depicted the “loyalty” & ubiquitous nature of the Hutch network. As per a Vodafone official, “It also symbolized the loyalty of the brand’s customer support team towards the customer”. What was essentially Vodafone in the ad was the colour Red instead of the Pink that had symbolized Hutch until then. Vodafone didn’t do away with the pug concept as it had created a distinct identity for the Hutch brand and was associated with what was good about their service. The pug personified the brand Hutch.
Brand Personality – The Pug
As stated by Deighton, Romer and McQueen (1989) a brand must be portrayed as a character in a story, as alive and action-oriented. The pug clearly fitted the concept and was seen as a key character in all of Hutch’s advertisements.
The brand-as-partner (BAP) concept is also evident from this campaign as the pug seemed to be fulfilling the dyadic relationship between the brand and the customers. The pug played the role of setting the context for the brand. The pug’s acceptance in the Indian customer’s psyche helped establish Vodafone’s identity in India, which was an important first step for a new brand entering into a new
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The traditional process followed by Vodafone in rebranding included two stages, as it had done in Turkey and the Czech Republic. There the company had started with the local brand name, like for India it would have been Vodafone-Hutch in the first stage and then fade Hutch out completely in the second step. However, the expanse and population of India meant that the process would have taken a lot of time and cost.
The second element that they probably wanted to communicate was that only the name had changed and the service was essentially still the same, which would have comforted the loyal customer base of Hutch, and Vodafone was relatively an unknown name for the majority of the population in

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