Case 2. Virgin Group
Virgin Group unites a variety of different businesses and products: transportation, wine, music and mobile phones, publishing, and many others. This company was created by Richard Branson, who adopted a very unconventional way to marketing and developing new products. The company started with a music recording studio. This studio was later sold to another company, but since that time Virgin Group included more than 200 companies.
The approach of Virgin Group is to identify unused or overpriced market opportunities, and to expand in these opportunity areas. Although such diversity might dilute brand identity, this is not the case of Virgin Group: the qualities of fun, innovation, quality and challenge characterize all products of the company.
Richard Branson uses unconventional marketing ideas and his own personality to advertise the products of Virgin Group. He chooses to surprise and shock the public, thus creating interest to the company’s new ventures. At the same time, he keeps in touch with the customers, personally checks the quality of the services, and provides compensation if there are service issues (e.g. when planes are delayed).
The recent strategic priorities of Virgin Group are environmental sustainability and corporate social responsibility. The foundation called Virgin Unite is working on the solutions of social and environmental problems. All businesses of Virgin Group maintain responsible conduct. The biggest challenge is related with Virgin Airlines which emit tons of carbon dioxide. The Earth Challenge was established to solve this problem: $25 million will be awarded to a scientist who offers a reasonable solution for removing greenhouse gases. Holistic marketing strategy and social responsibility are two characteristic features of Virgin Group.
Kotler, P. & Keller, K.L. (2012). Marketing Management. 14th edition. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.