How Michelin Tyres Revolutionised Marketing

by Matmore Motor Matmore Motor Parts

Michelin is a rare company which has transcended the tyre market. It is a marketing giant which has shown many companies how to sell things. There is a reason why Michelin’s logo is synonymous with a fictional character called Bibendum, often called just ‘Bib’ or The Michelin Man.

You know you are in the company of great marketers when a symbol becomes synonymous with your brand name.

But how did Michelin do it? Sure, it has taken them 120 years to reach where they are; The Michelin Man turns 120 in 2018. This French icon has broken the status quo on multiple occasions in the past. It has also led this company to break many longstanding conventions. In this respect, globally known Michelin Stars, given for culinary skills and Michelin’s Guides come to mind.

What’s the secret recipe for marketing success?

There are several mantras which you must remember.

·         An image that is easy to remember is a must-have for long-standing marketing success. A bib is one such image. It is a lifelike figure made of tyres. This strong but straightforward imagery implies two things: that Michelin makes tyres, and that their business is for everyone. The image is devoid of any racial or social stereotypes.

·         Long before 3D became the norm, Michelin came up with its iconic design. It still carries the old-world charm to convey its message of quality.

·         Ensure that the character appears in movies. Bibendum has starring roles in several movies, while a late 1980’s film had all of the characters dressed up as Bibs. In this sense too, Michelin was far ahead of the curve.

Reflecting an era

Michelin tyres saw their business booming in the 1920s, a time when automobiles were scarce, and few people could afford one. Initially, Bib had a cigar, cuff links and a monocle. These are all aspects of an upper-class gentleman. As more and more people began buying cars, these accessories were subtracted one by one.

With more buyers, Bib became more relatable. He is nowadays a friendly guy with a smile.

The genie of mobility

The democratisation of cars was a revolution. Gradually, the prices of vehicles and their components started to lower. Tyres were pretty expensive initially; with companies like Michelin, cheap tyres in Spalding and other parts of the UK became a reality.

The Michelin Man is both a guide and a mentor. He is a constant in the ever-expanding and fiercely competitive tyre industry.


The Financial Times has stated that Michelin’s Bib is the best brand icon of all time. This iconic character has also seen several changes in its 120 years of existence. That said, its basic concept stays the same.

A character which became internationally well-known as a tyre icon is still continually reinventing itself. Michelin’s growth in tyre sales volumes and profits has grown over the years, as has the popularity of Bibendum. If you feel like you need a new set of tyres, check out the extensive range of Matmore Motor Parts tyres in Spalding. A new set of tyres which comes at low prices is always a boon.

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Created on Aug 23rd 2018 06:15. Viewed 345 times.


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