If I just said the word “marketing,” what would first come to mind? Maybe some terms like marketing campaigns, email campaigns, social media, and word of mouth, right? But marketing certainly isn’t limited to just these few ideas and methods. And Lego as a company makes this very clear.
More often than not, company diversification is usually seen as a way to minimize risk or generate new sources of revenue. But over the years, Lego’s taken a different kind of approach. Let’s look at some of the innovative ways they’ve diversified their brand, and what other benefits they reaped.
The Lego Movie
Back in 2014, The Lego Movie was released in collaboration between Lego and the movie studio Warner Brothers. And surprise, surprise — it was a hit! Though the movie was not cheap at all to produce at around $65M in costs, it generated over $468M at the box office alone, clearly making up for the initial investment of time and money. But it wasn’t just revenue the movie generated — tons of hype and word of mouth followed that gave Lego’s actual products lots of time to shine in the spotlight.
Legoland Theme Parks
Lego now has 10 theme parks spread out across the world — all of which have become top tourist spots. And thanks to the recent recovery from the pandemic, the number of visitors their theme parks attract skyrocketed over 70% to 15.8M worldwide in 2022. Families, adults, children — all these segments enjoy visiting Legoland whether or not they actually purchase the Lego products. So when it comes to upselling or simply just building a bigger brand, Legoland is the perfect way for Lego to get their products into the hands of customers and to get people talking about it.
Video Games and VR
Recently, Lego has also dabbled in quite a lot of technological diversification. Not only have they launched their fair share of video games, but they’ve also released many exciting VR experiences. In a world that’s constantly becoming more and more digital, Lego’s expansion into the tech world has helped strengthen its competitive edge. In particular, adding digital experiences to Lego’s product portfolio also helps them continue to dominate the game and entertainment industry for kids, further reinforcing their brand image.
Several years ago, Lego also launched their first few concept stores — another way Lego has put their brand out there more aggressively. Lego now has over 170 retail stores, up from just 27 in 2007, providing fans with opportunities to host birthday parties, take classes with professional builders, and attend other exciting activities and events. Opening retail locations was Lego’s successful attempt at enhancing their customer experience and bringing their brand closer to the customer.
Lego Certified Professional Program
And finally, Lego is well aware that while their products target children, they have a pretty large fan base of adults too. One of the special ways they tried to cater to this customer segment of theirs was launching their Lego Certified Professional Program, where they could spotlight their most committed and talented builders as another way to improve their company-customer relationships. Similarly to an ambassador program, the LCP program also allows Lego to promote their brand straight through the work and projects of their superfans.
If you decide to diversify, your goals shouldn’t stop at growth in profit. Be intentional about how your diversification methods build upon, add to, and improve your brand. Just look at Lego — their diversification efforts all contributed to building up a more cohesive, complete brand image (which is as satisfying as completing a lego set!).