The Queen – a marketing powerhouse or a dying legacy?
On April 21st, the Queen’s birthday, a limited-edition Barbie doll in the likeness of Queen Elizabeth was released to mark the platinum jubilee. Astoundingly, this was sold out within 3 seconds.
There is little doubt that the Queen is one of the most depicted women in the world, and she shows us a thing or two to learn about her brand.
In a documentary by True Royalty TV, “Elizabeth at 95: The Invincible Queen”, brand and business experts interviewed in the program estimate the Royal Family’s brand value at around US$100 billion, with the Queen’s personal brand worth at around US$50 billion, similar to the value of global brands such as Coca-Cola, Nike and Microsoft.
That makes Her Majesty a more prominent global brand than icons from the worlds of politics, business, media, and entertainment, including Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, the Obamas, Kim Kardashian, and Beyoncé.
Recent research also indicates that Queen Elizabeth was the world’s fifth most successful brand, ever. Representing an institution that has become a brand over a thousand years old, how does the Queen remain so powerful as a brand?
The documentary titled “The Invincible Queen” tells us that the Queen has built strong brand immunity that is hard to break. Despite the royal family controversies, the Queen protected the Windsor brand at all costs, and Her Majesty’s image remains consistently positive and firmly intact. During her nearly 70 years on the throne, Queen Elizabeth II can be said as is the world’s longest standing and most successful CEO.
While protecting the royal brand is one of the keys to success, cultural relevance is also a powerful indicator of brand strength. Her Majesty continues to be referenced within modern culture, remaining relevant over time. Her name and image are instantly recognisable and used throughout global iconography, with the limited-edition Platinum Jubilee Barbie doll proving to be a highly sought-after item, selling out within 3 seconds and already fetching prices of over $1,000 on eBay.
Queen Elizabeth’s brand stayed steady and focused throughout her reign, even during years of significant environmental change. Since her coronation in 1953, she has attended many worldwide events, including participating as a young woman in the WWII efforts as a mechanic. However, throughout the time and years of incredible global changes and technological advancements, her brand and values have remained ceremonial, resisting entanglement in political matters or bureaucracy.
Think of a brand you love over others; your loyalty towards this particular brand will cause you to have a positive and even powerful bias towards their other products. The Queen has developed a strong loyalty and favourable bias from brand Britain, brand Royal, and the Royal family. Similar to how Apple established itself as a technology leader with the iPod, benefitted from this perspective to enter and dominate other product markets and spaces.
It’s clear that successfully branding is vital to any business. Branding has emerged in recent years as more important than the celebrity, marketing campaign or advertisement behind it. We work with brands to build profit, for purpose or to leave a legacy. We do this by building brand immunity, cultural relevance and help you stay focused.
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