In the early nineties, Larry Breedlove set out to build guitars his own way. His brother Kim (Kevin’s father) soon joined, creating the humble beginnings of a company that’s become a global player in the acoustic instrument market. When Tom Bedell acquired the company in 2010, he knew significant change was needed to ensure continued growth in a competitive market. Despite its previous success, there were still big business challenges to overcome – low brand awareness, an outdated identity, unfocused marketing, and perhaps the biggest unforeseen – losing focus on what makes Breedlove instruments so desirable. Having grown a previous business to great heights, Tom knew the power of branding. And that’s when we got the assignment of a lifetime – reposition the Breedlove Guitars brand for growth.
We began the branding process by conducting personal interviews with Breedlove stakeholders and craftsmen, industry experts, dealers, and guitar buyers to uncover existing perceptions and key insights surrounding the brand. What we heard was an innovative approach to design, craftsmanship, and sound is what made Breedlove instruments so special. We discovered these three unique attributes, which have always been at the heart of the Breedlove culture, were the primary drivers of product purchase. We distilled over twenty years of existing equity to a single brand truth – Distinctively Crafted Sound. This inspired a complete redesign of the visual identity, a messaging overhaul, and a market segmentation that would enable targeted marketing at the consumer level, aimed to increase brand awareness and stimulate instrument sales.
Although the rebranding launch is in its earliest stages, the initial reaction has been overwhelmingly positive. The new positioning has been fully embraced internally and integrated company wide. For Breedlove, Distinctively Crafted Sound isn’t just a tagline; it’s a religion that has become a rigorous benchmark for all 2014 product decisions. Incoming orders have already increased exponentially, and to keep up with the demand, a 12,000-square-foot factory addition is currently under construction. The rebrand has also caught the attention of industry influencers Music Trades and Premier Guitar Magazine who both ran feature articles on the topic. After nearly a quarter of a century, Breedlove now matches their remarkable instrument building skills with an equally adept brand.