Harmonie Water is the second best-selling bottled water globally. The company's marketing director is looking into how to establish a global brand identity for its product. Based on the findings of Project Unify and Project Aqua, what has Comeau learned about building a global brand identity?
John A. Quelch and John L. Teopaco
Harvard Business Review (917527-PDF-ENG)
June 16, 2017
Case questions answered:
- Is Harmonie Water a global brand? Why or Why not? Based on the findings of Project Unify and Project Aqua, what has Comeau learned about building a global brand identity?
- What factors should Comeau consider in deciding how much Harmonie’s brand identity and communications be standardized or customized? What should the roles of headquarters (corporate) and country managers be in Harmonie’s branding?
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Harmonie Water: Refreshing the World Naturally Case Answers
Is Harmonie Water a global brand? Why or Why not? Based on the findings of Project Unify and Project Aqua, what has Comeau learned about building a global brand identity?
From the case, it could be understood that Harmonie Water has a worldwide presence, sold in over 130 countries with sales of $7.1 billion in 2015, and was heavily advertised, with approximately $100 million dedicated to its purpose.
However, it cannot be termed a Global Brand. One of the attributing factors could be the brand not being able to stand out from the competition.
The Country Managers are in charge of the brand in their countries and have the freedom to make decisions on the marketing strategy to be followed in their respective countries.
As a result of this, the company gets positive results in some markets and not-so-good results in other markets. Hence, it is not the preferred brand there.
The below table taken from the case describes their marketing hits and misses:
Furthermore, to be considered a global brand, it should have standardization of its processes, strategies, and image. Thus, it is able to position itself in the minds of the consumers to such an extent that regardless of where in the world they are, they recognize and prefer consuming Harmonie Water.
Learnings from Project Unify and Project Aqua:
Project Unify was planned to identify the characteristics of different consumers associated with Harmonie, and Project Aqua had the perspective to use the results of Unify and try to that people either fall in revitalizing or in refined.
Prior to these projects, Comeau had the following perception about being a global brand:
The same positioning worldwide: he had the opinion that a constant and consistent market positioning provides functional features along with innovation when incorporated with an emotional appeal that would be the same positioning worldwide.
Concentration on single product category: The marketing director tries to focus on the standardization of operations on the production of premium water. He basically focused on a single product category.
The company name should be the brand name, and all advertising budget should be spent on Harmonie Water in order to develop a perceptual entity in the minds of consumers.
The following were some of the results of these two projects:
Consumers across all countries identified “taste” as a strong indicator but disagreed about the value of other attributes taken into account.
Most consumers agreed that special occasions would be appropriate for enjoying premium water and that portraying affluent individuals at such occasions would contribute to an image of refinement but disagreed about whether showing glamorous locales would make Harmonie Water seem more refined.
From these results, Comeau could have learned that…
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