Live, breathe and wear passion
A Diesel case study

Page 3: Promotion

'Be stupid'

With the launch of the recent marketing campaign around the phrase Be Stupid” , Diesel took a look at what brought its current pipeline: it was Renzo Rosso, all those years ago, taking the “stupid” move to make jeans he wanted to wear. Then he took the even more stupid move of trying to sell those jeans to others, believing he might not be the only fool in Molvena! As it turned out, there were quite a few more to be found and Renzo's “stupid” move ended up creating something which millions of people around the world now enjoy.

Promotion and marketing at Diesel takes a very different route to many other companies. It is always about engaging with the customer as opposed to selling at them: creating an enjoyable two-way dialogue as opposed to a hollow one-way monologue. All elements of Diesel's promotion aim to engage the customer with the lifestyle. If they like the lifestyle, they might like the products.

For example, the Diesel team saw music as an inseparable part of that lifestyle and realised that exploring new music and new artists was all part of trying something different and experimenting with the unusual. 10 years later, Diesel:U:Music is a global music support collaborative, giving unsigned bands a place where they can be heard and an opportunity to have their talent recognised. It's not about selling, it's about giving people something they will enjoy and interact with.

Tied to Diesel:U:Music is an online radio station. It is another example of where Diesel unconventionality has created something which pushes conceptions and the usual ways of doing things. The radio station takes a rather unusual approach of not having a traditional play list but rather gives the choice to the resident DJ. This freedom is reflected in the eccentric mix of music which is played on the station.

Above- and below-the-line

In promotion and marketing, we often talk about “above-the-line” and “below-the-line” methods of reaching consumers. Above-the-line marketing is aimed at a mass audience through media such as television or radio. Below-the-line marketing takes a more individual, targeted approach using incentives to purchase via various promotions. In this case passion again acts to blur and gel the boundaries between the two approaches. If we had to define this approach in terms of theory, we would call it “through-the-line”, i.e. a blend of the two.

The passion and energy embodied by the Diesel lifestyle is communicated through a mix of above-the-line and below-the-line approaches. The balance and composition of that mix is what the Diesel team hands over to their passion and feel for the company and brand. That energy guides the way this abstract theory is realised in projects such as Diesel:U:Music and the “Be Stupid” campaign, which entertain and interact with their potential customers.

Diesel | Live, breathe and wear passion

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