Whirlpool GM offers insight into marketing strategy, new product lines

By Patrick Avenell

MELBOURNE, VIC: Last Thursday, Whirlpool Australia announced a restructuring within its marketing team. Today, we spoke to Whirpool’s general manager of marketing, David Graham to find out exactly what’s been happening.

“Fundamentally, we have made a decision to continue our brand investment and our growth within this marketplace, and as a result of that we’ve added some new people to the team as well as refocusing existing members of the team to produce a structure that will certainly give us more product and more brand focus as we continue to drive our growth within this marketplace,” said Graham.

This restructuring of the Whirlpool marketing team was instigated after the resignation of “some people” from within the team. Graham reported that there were no redundancies, and that the team has actually been bolstered, with the goal being to reinforce Whirlpool retail strategy.

“We’ve got a very clear strategy that we’ve articulated to our trade partners, and there are obviously certain stages [to this strategy]. We’re very much into the second year of that strategy, and at this point in time, there are obviously some market dynamics that have caused us to maybe do some recalibration along the way, but in the main, this strategy is very much still there.”

As for what to expect for the rest of 2009, Graham identified two categories that Whirlpool will be updating by the end of the year.

“There’s certainly some exciting product developments ahead of us for the remainder of this year. There’ll be some in our cooking category, and we’ve got some big developments in refrigeration as well; that we’ll have in place in preparation for the upcoming summer season.”

Finally, after the success last year of the ‘Guess Whose Mum’s Got a Whirpool?’ campaign, Graham said we can expect to see some new celebrities donning the frocks in a refreshed edition some time next year.

“We’ve certainly begun negotiations and we’ve begun the process of relooking at the campaign and how we refresh that campaign.

“It was always set up so that the beauty of the campaign is we would get more and more celebrities to dress up their mums and help with the branding.

“That’s very much part of our strategy for next year.”

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