Ask not what your masterbrand can do….
Posted by Giles Lury on July 30, 2012
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In most discussions of brand architecture the focus is on the role of the masterbrand in relation to the sub-brand. What level of endorsement should it have and what are the values and attributes that the sub-brand must retain?
However, to paraphrase JFK, sometimes it is worth asking not what your masterbrand can do for your sub-brand but what your sub-brand can do for the masterbrand.
One of the roles that a sub-brand can play is to help rejuvenate a tired brand or help inject new and complementary values and attributes.
A classic case relates to Nestle and Kit Kat in the UK. Now globally Nestle is a major player in the chocolate confectionary market but in the UK it was always hidden under the huge shadow of Cadbury. When Nestle acquired Rowntree’s they also acquired the Kit Kat brand. The introduction of Nestle onto the Kit Kat pack in the UK did little to help Kit Kat. Indeed some argued it could even damage it.
However when you look at from the other point of view, over time as Kit Kat has become more linked to Nestle, it has helped establish Nestle’s credentials as a major player in chocolate confectionary in the UK. A clear case of the sub-brand playing a role of positively building and modifying the attributes and associations of the masterbrand.