A Brand Too Far
Can a brand sometimes go too far with its products reaching into every corner of our lives? Trader Joe’s taking over my pantry may be one thing, but when I see Justin Bieber toothbrushes I start to wonder (sorry “beliebers”). And then I saw this: Cinnabon Vodka.
At Funk/Levis, we frequently talk about the strength of a brand residing in its core values. Cinnabon’s values seem to reside in pressing its way into every grocery store product imaginable. According to Bloomberg Businessweek, Cinnabon is already in over 70 products on grocery store shelves. The latest delectable delight is set to launch on Sunday. As you relax from two full days at the mall, you can relive the experience with a shot or two of 70 proof Cinnabon essence.
The bigger issue is with Cinnabon overreaching and cannibalizing its core product. Cinnabon is already a household name, recognizable throughout the United States. Branching out into additional products through licensing may provide an important source of revenue (for Cinnabon it is nearly a third of the company’s total revenue stream), but from a marketing perspective it can dilute the effect of the brand. One bad experience with a Cinnabon-flavored product can make a potential customer avoid the brand in other areas.
It seems as if Cinnabon’s core brand value is simply to become bigger and bigger, rather than a focus on one or two core products everyone loves. If this truly is the value of the brand, then perhaps we should join them in a Cinnabon Vodka toast to a job well done.