Recommend a brand worth researching
January 23, 2008 3:43 AM   Subscribe

MeFites, please recommend a specific brand (a product or service, not a company) with easy access to key market information such as market size, market share and competitive scope.

I've been assigned a major project for my marketing class and I'm looking for some fresh ideas from the hive mind.

P.S. Bonus points if the branded product/service is socially conscious/environmentally friendly/jaw-droppingly weird or cool.
posted by JaySunSee to Education (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
What do you mean by "a product or service, not a company"?

I'd suppose any major brand you can think of would have something.
posted by divabat at 4:42 AM on January 23, 2008

A lot of industries (and by extension, major players) are covered by analysts or in-depth research initiatives. Most of the data is available through databases your library subscribes to. You will have a much easier time if you pick a public company, since A-they are more likely to be covered in the news and research and B-they have to report data that a private company can keep close. I would say that iPod or iTunes are brands that you could probably find a wealth of info on. You may have a harder time with the "socially conscious/environmentally friendly/jaw-droppingly weird or cool" condition, since those companies may be more likely to be smaller, private, or startups, where there won't be as much info available.
posted by ml98tu at 6:10 AM on January 23, 2008

Choose a brand that has a few clearly defined competitors. I did video rental for one project as the major players are all public - 10K reports are your BESTEST friend - and there are a very small number of them. So, Netflix.
posted by GuyZero at 7:08 AM on January 23, 2008

GuyZero: Netflix is a company, not a brand as per requirement. But thanks for jumping in.

divabat: A product would be a specific video game, say Guitar Hero III. The company would be Activision.
posted by JaySunSee at 8:00 AM on January 23, 2008

Well Netflix is a company that has only one service and thus the brand is the company. If the requirement is to have a brand that's not managed by a single-product company that's different. But I would stick by my assessment that Netflix is a brand. If they got bought by NBC they'd still brand themselves the same way.

Once you get into business units you lose the ability to get easy data. Find a company whose 10K report breaks down the numbers by business unit then - in my experience this is fairly rare. If you look at Viacom's 10-K there's very little per-brand info in there. This is pretty typical in my experience.

So unless you're explicitly prohibited from using a single-brand company I'd say go with that.
posted by GuyZero at 9:00 AM on January 23, 2008

But if you do want a brand that I have absolutely no data for, Clorox bought Burt's Bees which is a pretty odd fit. But I would guess you can dig up some data on the personal care products market. Burt's had a environmental focus, while Clorox, not so much. That's an interesting angle.
posted by GuyZero at 9:03 AM on January 23, 2008

GuyZero, we talked about Clorox purchasing Burt's Bees in the last class. Interesting (no spooky even), that you brought that up.
posted by JaySunSee at 2:39 PM on January 23, 2008

You're killing me here. KILLING.

Fine then, how about Altoids? A product of Callard & Bowser, which is in turn a division of Wrigley, previously a division of Kraft. Apparently they're not really very popular in England which is odd considering that's where they're made. But it is a complete brand play - history or not, it's sugar and mint oil. Hardly a hard product to duplicate.

However, finding market share data - that I don't know. Competitive scope is easy though.

Or do the obvious parallel to Burts, which would be Unilever's purchase of Ben & Jerry's several years back. Another hippy company swallowed by a faceless multinational.
posted by GuyZero at 4:28 PM on January 23, 2008

You definitely earned that one buddy. Thank you!
posted by JaySunSee at 7:07 AM on January 24, 2008

I'm waiting for you to post your project. :)
posted by GuyZero at 4:32 PM on January 29, 2008

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