Tumi is a brand which built itself on truly superior and differentiated product i.e substance. Early adoption by celebrities, associated PR , premium pricing and selected distribution gave the brand enough sizzle for it to become reasonably aspirational especially for business travelers. For a while it was a bit like the Ford model T- you can have it in any color as long as it is black.

The brand clearly needed some more ‘dash’. There have been some good “dash” initiatives like Add an Accent on the core Alpha range (shown below). This is in line with the brand architecture ( black and a touch of red) and exactly what was needed- a touch, an accent.

However some other initiatives ( shown below) have perhaps gone over board. They are likely to confuse the core consumer and dilute the brand core.

Inspiration to do it right exists within the category in RIMOWA. They have stuck to their core – the grooved (corrugated aluminum) exterior and a product anchored around toughness and strength -but added bright colors, accents and lighter materials via the LIMBO and SALSA range to complement the core TOPAS range.

One response to “TUMI needs DASH not SPLASH

  1. Talking about off-strategy, in the past few months I saw a sedan (Panamera) from Porsche on the street, and I almost fainted! Just when I thought Cayenne was already a disgrace to the Porsche heritage!

    Having said that, these two monsters did account for more than 60% of Porsche’s sales globally – this is great news to the company financially, but perhaps a positioning disaster…

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