Is Garmin the Blockbuster of navigation?
BAV data shows that Blockbuster’s brand equity went downhill after it wasn’t able to keep up with alternative streaming services. The data clearly shows that in 10 years Blockbuster went from being a Mass Market brand to being a commodity. Once, the brand had both Strength and Stature, but from 2002 until 2012, consistently lost Strength and its position in the market.
Similar to Blockbuster, Garmin has also consistently lost Brand Strength since 2010, while its competitor Google Maps still resides as a super-leader with a strong equity.
Moreover, if we look at the BAV imagery profiles of Blockbuster and Netflix, we see a trend here. Of the top 10 imagery losses Blockbuster has incurred between 2005 and 2012, 5 of the attributes were within the top 10 imagery gains of Netflix within the same time period. In the 7 year time frame, Blockbuster has become less of a Leader, less Friendly, less Fun, less Trustworthy, less Reliable, while Netflix gained on all these attributes.
If we analyze the brand meaning change of Garmin and Google Maps in the same manner, we see that Garmin has lost quality, became less Progressive, Fun, Reliable, Dynamic and Authentic, while Google Maps has injected all of these attributes into its core meaning. This similarity in the Blockbuster-Netflix and Garmin-Google Maps relationships, is enough to raise a red flag for Garmin.
However, when Netflix declared its leadership in the streaming space, Blockbuster did not take strong action in order to stay afloat in the market and lost equity fast.Garmin, on the other hand, keeps renewing itself through new innovations, many of which specifically target active consumers. It has fitness trackers VivoFit and VivoSmart, which measure activity and heart rate. Garmin also makes VivoActive, which is similar to an Apple watch. In addition to Quatix, Garmin’s underwater GPS, the company recently announced Nuatix ™, a hands-free in-view display for boating data that mariners can wear on their sunglasses that is the first of its kind. Varia Vision is another wearable GPS tailored for motorists and bikers. These innovations indicate that Garmin is not ready to give up and will continue to innovate in an effort to keep up with the times.