Learning from Winners: How IBM Seized the Day
Advertising Research Foundation
After IBM embarked on its marketing transformation almost 15 years ago, the company's brand ranking leapt from 282 in 1994 to 3 in 2002 (Brandweek, 2002). Although many factors contributed to this success, the company undertook an agency-rationalization initiative that literally changed the way it does advertising and marketing. And that program played a pivotal role in turning IBM back into a successful marketing organization.
In the early '90s, when the largest technology boom in history was about to take off, IBM was struggling with inherited problems. The company was a vast global conglomerate with incompatible brand strategies, and its brand value was in the doldrums. In 1993, BusinessWeek's “Global Brands” survey valued IBM's brand at just $50 million; a Fortune magazine cover featured IBM under the headline “Dinosaurs.” It was clear that IBM needed to transform and reignite its brand.