Brand Re-engineering: From Global Brands to Local Markets


This image captivated me greatly despite its simplicity, prompting me as an analyst to delve into its profound yet straightforward composition.

It left known brands marked wherever they intervened with their messages, presence, and iconic imagery, transcending boundaries of race, language, and even religion.

Such transcendence draws strength from the brand machinery, momentum, and sustained presence, endowing these products with a sophisticated mental image among the target audience.

However, as these brands grew in presence and strength, even when their stakeholders believed they could control and dictate them, they faced backlash when these brands took stances that might anger their audiences. A clear example is the boycott campaigns due to some companies’ support for the Zionist occupation army in its massacres against the Palestinian people in Gaza. This boycott extended beyond Arabs or Muslims, reaching deep into the heart of these companies. We have heard of cases where some Google employees were dismissed due to their opposition to their company’s support for the Zionist occupation.

This is evidence of the power of user engagement, whether as consumers or employees within the brand’s ecosystem.

Returning to the image, which depicts a complex world not necessarily marked by discord but coexistence! The image is from a street in northern Tehran in the Islamic Republic of Iran in 2017, featuring an American Nike logo with an Iranian woman passing by wearing attire laden with religious connotations, expressing adherence to the values predominant in that country.

This convergence, rather than divergence, doesn’t necessarily imply assimilation nor separation. For example, Nike decades ago launched a head covering for Muslim women swimmers due to an emerging market.

This symbolic and cultural convergence may prompt brand re-engineering, leveraging product strengths to enhance and tailor them for specific local communities, potentially launching them globally as alternatives.

Some African companies are initiating endeavors like launching their own athletic shoes for the African continent, such as Bathu shoes. Opportunities in the African market remain untapped, even by its own inhabitants!

Therefore, I see the importance of convergence for intelligent utilization of reverse engineering. This approach diversifies options, enhances quality, and crafts local brands that can expand regionally and globally.

“Fulla” was a brand that transcended geography with its character, dolls, products, and jingles but did not endure, among many examples.

What we need are not just brands reflecting our identity but serving as pathways for coexistence, understanding, and convergence beyond geography, ethnicity, language, and even religious differences.

As multinational corporations aim to replicate versions of their audience in every country to broaden, expand, and magnify their empires, local companies must carve out their identity and values while aligning with the power of quality and presence. This ensures competitive presence and logical market diversity, moving away from monochrome dominance due to the influence of large corporations.

In the image, I see a challenge and opportunity:

  • Challenge: For these established companies to assert their presence with their values and messages, regardless of market locality, signifying respect for that uniqueness.
  • Opportunity: To initiate reverse engineering and innovation to introduce brands that compete with these well-known ones, offering fresh choices not only to local but potentially regional and global audiences as well.

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