This article explores how an organization can use its history to define and deliver its corporate brand strategy. We specifically look at Adidas, which, having rejected its history at one stage, rediscovered and used the philosophy and ideas of its founder to provide direction for the future, legitimate strategic choices, and enrich the corporate brand. Through analysis of material evidence and interviews with senior and long-serving employees, we conceptualize the way Adidas developed a systematic approach to the use of history in its corporate brand strategy by creating the means to uncover, remember, curate, and then embed it. Combining the lessons of the Adidas case with evidence from other cases in which history was used to refocus and revitalize corporate brands, we deliver key recommendations for managers.
Bibliographical notePublished online: 16 October 2019.
- Corporate brand strategy
- Brand identity
- Brand management
- Organizational strategy