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Brand Cannibalism


Marketing has evolved over the years. It has shifted from its foundation idea of converting customer needs and wants into products and services to a more transactional idea – to makes sales redundant and innovation has a key role to play.

R&D has emerged as an important department in every business. Companies are allocating extra funds to R&D departments to innovate new products and discover new uses of existing products. All this to bite into a big chunk of the market share and brand cannibalism has become the premier route for companies looking to employ this.

Let’s understand how this works.

The company launches a new product into a market where the growth is less. The product either eats the share of the existing products or disappears. When it eats the share of its own company’s products, it’s cannibalism.

Let’s see an example.

Apple is a master of this game. It uses planned and powerful cannibalism to increase sales of its products. With the introduction of iPad, the sales of the Macintosh declined. iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro ate up the market for iPhone X and iPhone XR.

Not only this. The design and features Apple employs in its new products, tarnishes the market of products with previous designs. Quad camera design collapsed the market of smartphones with dual camera designs. Face unlock feature ate the market of smartphones with pin or pattern unlock designs.

Cannibalism if done properly and strategically can be a boon for the company. Sales shoot up over a short period of time. The product becomes a benchmark. The company’s awareness increases manifold. Overall, the brand equity skyrockets.

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