BRAND & CREATIVE STRATEGY
FIND THE UNTAPPED OPPORTUNITY HIDDEN IN CUSTOMERS UNMET NEEDS
Strategy to some is a PowerPoint of blue-sky theory... But if your experience is rooted in execution, you take a different approach. The end user or customer holds the secrets of your brands future in their wishes, desires, frustrations and unmet needs. Where needs intersect with capabilities, lies strategy.
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PEOPLE NO LONGER GO TO MALLS TO SHOP
THEY GO TO MEET AND HAVE ENTERTAINMENT EXPERIENCES
BRAND & CREATIVE STRATEGY
Matli Consulting was hired by Westfield to craft a streamlined, practical and usable set of brand guidelines, marketing and ad templates... But in the first meeting with the CMO it was clear that the brand's entire positioning was in question as Amazon continued to wreak havoc on the retail sector.
So we conducted an audit, reviewed their performance data and analyzed, with the CMO, why one mall failed while another flourished. By asking the right questions, we discovered an insight; the malls that had the most restaurants, theaters and whose managers hosted fashion shows, cooking demos and wine tastings far out-performed those whose managers emphasized operations and sales.
From this came a new positioning strategy that resulted in a strategic shift in how Westfield approached its whole business, prioritizing experiences over shopping.
CAPITOL STUDIOS TURNAROUND &
AN ICONIC BRAND THAT NO LONGER DELIVERED THE EXPERIENCE THAT CLIENTS EXPECTED FROM A PREMIERE STUDIO
BRAND, SEGMENTATION & GO-TO-MARKET STRATEGY
When Capitol Studios hired Matli Group, rumors swirled about a possible sell off of the famed Capitol Records Tower to a condo developer, winding down the division which had been a drag on EMI Music's bottom line for nearly a decade.
We first conducted a brand audit and qualitative interviews with studio clients to understand where the brand perception failed to align with the actual brand experience. Deeper analysis led us to segment their business, defining 3 unique markets. After updating both the physical and digital brand experience, we helped them re-launch to the industry. Then we helped them define and launch multiple new revenue streams allowing them to monetize the Tower for events, rental of premium writers suites and launch licensing businesses and brand partnerships that ended up netting more revenue than the core Studios business.
Soon Capitol was profitable for the first time in 9 years and now is part of a larger Capitol group that generates over $500M in revenues and has become, again, the center of the music world.
Approach & Methodology
As part of our strategy practice at Matli Group, we developed a proprietary methodology for approaching brand development, rebranding, repositioning, licensing and go-to-market launches. Using a positioning framework developed by Interbrand UK for brand valuation, we created processes to develop the specific components of brand value...
Case Study: Hagerty
Hagerty is the largest private insurer of vintage, collectible cars in the US – and beloved by its devoted customers. Although Hagerty knew its customers were passionate about cars, they'd never segmented and profiled them to find specific new channels to engage them in. Using cluster analysis, we developed a profile-based strategy to help Hagerty grow
Case Study: Capitol Studios
When we were hired by Capitol Studios to reposition and relaunch its brand to the music industry, there was a real concern that the iconic Hollywood institution might be shut down and turned into an apartment building. Two years later, Capitol Studios had become the crown jewel in EMI Music’s holdings and the adopted symbol of the label with new revenue streams, a new VIP customer experience and ROI-driving business segmentation…
Case Study: Iron Mountain
Iron Mountain's Entertainment Services division has the distinction of housing the original masters from every major movie studio and every major music label. That's the original recordings of much of Western culture.... but only their current clients knew it. IMES hired us to identify new markets, create messaging and develop testimonial videos, website content and sales materials to expand...
Case Study: LeapFrog
I was hired by LeapFrog to oversee all marketing execution and brand touchpoints. My KPIs were to increase the brand’s relevance with millennial moms and improve operational efficiency across all marketing and brand operations. Within two years, LeapFrog had moved from 6th to 2nd most trusted brand by millennial moms. Creative and Marketing execution had higher ROI per piece produced and operated at 40% of the original budget with the same volume of workflow… and 3x employee satisfaction.
Strategy Mini Case Studies
Warner Bros Classic Properties Licensing Strategy
We were hired by Warner Bros to go through their vault of classic, seasonal and retro properties to find licensing opportunities and build go-to-market plans around them.
The first step was to identify which markets fit with which properties; we sized them and ranked the properties by likely market potential and conducted profiling analysis on the properties with the highest potential for brand extension.
The results included strategies for Wizard of Oz, Gone with the Wind, The Goonies, A Christmas Story, Frosty as well as some TVproperties from the 70s and 80s.... In the subsequent years, all of these properties have been developed and are now earning licensing revenues for Warner Bros.
Oceans 11 Franchise Licensing Strategy
As Oceans 13 was in production, we conducted a brand analysis on the Oceans 11 franchise to see if it had market potential in product licensing. Using our proprietary methodology we identified 5 specific market verticals for potential development. We used these insights to create a test; we would pitch licensees and retailers and quantify demand.
The pitch kit targeted the licensors that would have to sell for the brand to succeed... The test results were both disappointing and successful; market demand wouldn't offset the royalty payouts to the actors and the brand would not sell without them. A single test saved the studio hundreds of thousands of dollars on what seemed lucrative but would really be a break-even business.
Abercrombie & Fitch Social Media Launch Strategy
Way back in 2012, Abercrombie & Fitch was both the coolest teen brand and also one of the only remaining consumer brands for teens that had no social media presence. We visited Abercrombie's offices with a plan to change that.
First, we educated the executives; they were already part of the social media conversation shaping brand perception among their customers (and detractors) – they just weren't participating.
We proposed a multi-phase approach, beginning with basic social media presence and community management and escalating to integrated in-store/social engagements. The result was Abercrombie's first Facebook page, the creation of a new department and immediate traction. They chose not to hire us to implement all of this, but we're proud to say that they followed the roadmap we laid out.
Lego Apparel Launch Strategy
We worked jointly with both Lego Systems USA and their first North American apparel licensee to craft how Lego would extend it’s brand to apparel and accessory products. The results were a roadmap of products and launch planning beginning at high-end speciality stores and flowing down to mass retailers… and the subsequent pitches, product designs and style guides needed to make the launch happen.