Learn the game and start to play
Most innovation anecdotes celebrate the triumph of the underdog. This adds fuel to the common misconception that people in large organizations cannot revive the dwindling fire of their heritage. However, with brand recognition and deep pockets, monolithic organizations are better equipped to enter new markets, they just lack the adaptive mindset to facilitate entrepreneurial change.
In 1930 fallen market shares and the Great Depression gave R.J. Reynolds an opportunity to spark change. They began to experiment with fear marketing, claiming, “More Doctors Smoke Camels Than Any Other Cigarettes.” Sounds healthy to me. In a time when health impacts were less known, the message created subconscious fear: if doctors only smoke Camels, should I be worried about my brand?
Lucky Strike countered with, “20,679 physicians say ‘Luckies are less irritating.Ҕ
It didn’t matter. By this time R.J. Reynolds was a step ahead.
In 1933 Camel started using athletes to associate their image with vitality. Superstar jocks endorsed, “They don’t get your wind,” “It takes healthy nerves… to win the World Series,” and “21 out of 23 St. Louis Cardinals Smoke Camels!”
By 1935, the once-aging giant had reclaimed its #1 position.
It is never too late to learn.
The above excerpt was from Jeremy Gutsche's book:
EXPLOITING CHAOS - 150 Ways to Spark Innovation During Times of Change.
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