The Case Centre’s top 40 bestselling cases

Thirty-ninth place  - Intel Inside
The case
Case: Intel Inside Intel Inside
Authors: David Weinstein
Institution: INSEAD
Ref: 594-038-1
Date published: 1994

Intel founded its highly visible 'Intel Inside' campaign to ‘…cut the utter confusion clones bring to the marketplace and to drive the premium brand message home to the pc buyer’. Some computer manufacturers enthusiastically adopted the Intel Inside label but others were reticent. Should the campaign have been authorised in the first place? Should it have been dropped? Was it a ‘desperation move’ as one newspaper claimed? Teaching objectives include assessing brand equity and building market power via differentiation.

The authors

David Weinstein is Emeritus Professor of Marketing at INSEAD.

The teacher

Niraj Dawar Niraj Dawar is a Marketing Professor at Ivey Business School, Canada. He blogs at Just Marketing. Niraj was a faculty member at INSEAD when his colleague, David Weinstein, was writing and developing the case. He explains why he likes teaching the case and the reasons for its enduring relevance.

I have used it since it was written. The case appeals to me because it captures the transition of a technology giant from a product and engineering focus to a recognition of the power of marketing and branding in the marketplace. I have taught it on a very large number of courses, including the MBA programme and executive courses.

The case offers a terrific platform for the discussion of many issues, including the internal and external challenges to building a brand, channel management and power in channel relationships, and impact on industry profitability.

The ability to surprise

Despite the fact that the case is now 20 years old, it still has the ability to surprise, and is still relevant to industries that are product-obsessed and need to make the transition to market-based competitive advantages. The case is essential to understand the history of marketing in the chip industry, and sheds light on current developments, including Intel’s challenges in the battle for chips in mobile devices.

Simple and effective

The case works well because it is simple, does not over-complicate the decision environment, and allows for a very open yet focused discussion on strategy and marketing in the tech industry.

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