Learning to lead with brand
At the beginning of the global recession, Citroën’s management team sought to address the brand’s declining sales. Although consumers still purchased Citroën cars for their features and benefits, the brand itself had little or no impact on buying decisions. Together, Landor and Citroën embarked on a seven-year journey to increase sales, bolster brand strength, and empower Citroën to seize new opportunities.
Powerful principles fuel growth
Analysis of the competitive landscape revealed that the most successful French car brands emphasized their technology. Landor crafted a new positioning that highlighted Citroën’s technological advances and its inventive past, carving out an appealing market niche. A new Brand Driver and tagline, Créative technologie, communicated Citroën’s unique value.
The branded showroom experience
Embracing the opportunity to move beyond the typical sales dealership model, we conceived Citroën-branded showrooms, which put the cars center stage and brought the driving adventure to life.
Customers followed an easily navigable visit circuit. Showroom and sales areas were undivided by walls, and exterior lines mimicked those of the vehicles. Best of all, the showroom concept was flexible and modular, ready to be adapted by dealerships worldwide.
Delivering brand promise
Landor’s work with Citroën encompassed a total brand transformation that extended to every touchpoint.
What we did
- Visual & verbal identity
- Environmental strategy & design
- Website design
- Online brand center
- Line extension strategy
- Internal engagement
- Brand partnership strategy
- Event planning
Sales defy global economy
A year after rebrand—still in the midst of the recession—sales increased 8 percent, with 69 percent of the French naming Citroën their favorite auto brand. Sales were especially strong in the developing markets of China, Russia, and Brazil.
“I don’t think I could have dreamed of a better scenario. Our studies show that our clients identify more with the brand and recognize its improvements.”Frédéric Banzet, CEO, Citroën
Brand strength rises to former levels
BrandAsset Valuator (BAV), Landor’s proprietary dataset of consumer brand perceptions, shows that Citroën’s 2010 rebrand helped it regain the strength it had lost since 2007. The BAV pillar profile reveals why: Citroën experienced dramatic gains in differentiation and relevance, the drivers of brand strength.
A risk reaps rewards
While it’s rare for a luxury vehicle offspring to share the parent brand’s name, Citroën’s new reputation as a more upmarket and inventive brand readied it for the challenge. When the upscale Citroën DS line was launched, the risk paid off: Premium sales doubled in just two years.
Mapping future success
Landor continues to partner with Citroën today. Recently, we codeveloped the future-focused C line and built the Citroën Advisor, an online platform that analyzes customer feedback to improve dealerships.