March 2, 2009
Lego Succeeds by Knocking Down, Building Up Brand Naming
Sometimes when you're building a brand, you need to knock it down and start from scratch. Like Lego.
Despite hard times and vicious competition from computer games, Lego is experiencing growth nowadays through constantly revolving licensing deals and by letting go of brand names that just don't work anymore.
This means that the Lego theme parks are out, but Lego Raider's of the Lost Ark is definitely in. In an industry that is seeing a 2% contraction, Lego expects to grow 5%-10% this year.
The name, Lego, actually comes from the Danish "leg godt" or "Play Well," and it seems many of us are willing to play right now, with seven Lego sets sold around the world every second. This makes Lego the fifth largest toy manufacturer worldwide - and they don't outsource to China.
The secret behind their continuing success comes from focusing on their core brands: Lego City, Lego Pirates and Lego Castle (as well as the very popular Star Wars and Bionicle series), while also adding new Lego sets inspired by Disney movies.
In addition, they offer cool gadgets that attract geeky adults like the Lego Cell Phone.
And of course in the spirit of "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em," they have found a nifty way to get their brand name into the gaming world. With games like Lego Star Wars on the XBOX, Playstation, and Nintendo Wii, not to mention Lego Rock Band for Xbox, Lego has successfully broken into the video game industry.
All of this allows the brand to stay fresh and relevant while at the same time remaining true to its roots.
It is interesting to see the Lego of today compared to the Lego of yesteryear, especially considering that they have used other brand names and movie titles to build market presence while also popping up in the video game world.
But there's just something kind of cool about using a joystick to move a Lego Indiana Jones around the screen, and I think A Lego Heavy Metal band is definitely a bit intriguing.
It goes to show that a good brand name and product line can appeal to generation after generation if its willing to deviate from the plans in the box and build something entirely new.
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