Harley-Davidson Motor Company

By Missy Scott

missy-scott-book“A skilled marketing and branding strategist, Clyde Fessler joined the company in the late 1970’s. By the time he retired 25 years later, he was Vice President for Business Development. He came to Harley-Davidson when the company had hit the wall. Quality was at an all-time low, the brand was tarnished by the undesirable bad-boy image and disheartened dealerships were a mess – both physically and in spirit. He would leave upgrading motorcycle quality to others and set himself to the task of creating a formal branding strategy and transforming the dealerships.”

“Considered by many to be the marketing guru behind the dramatic turnaround of Harley-Davidson, Fessler held responsibility for a number of programs that brought the company forward. As Director of Marketing, Fessler led the establishment of the Harley Owners Group … making it the largest enthusiast club in the world. Later, as Director of Licensing, Clyde was responsible for a new business that adds considerable financial value to the company and has received national recognition.”

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Radical Marketing

By Sam Hill and Glenn Rifkin

radical-marketingWith a subtitle that reads ‘From Harvard to Harley, Lessons From Ten That Broke the Rules and Made It Big’, Sam Hill and Glen Riskin’s book Radical Marketing attributes Clyde Fessler’s work to spearheading Harley-Davidson’s successful reinvention into an enduring brand … and nothing less than an American icon of freedom and individuality.

Excerpts from Radical Marketing: “If radical marketing is about creating a community around your brand, there have been few better displays of radical marketing than Harley-Davidson. Owning a Harley makes you a member of a very unique community.”

“Clyde Fessler and Harley-Davidson management understand that a Harley is more than just a motorcycle, it is a lifestyle, a work of art, an emotional connection to a widespread and unique community.”

“Much has been written about the company’s dramatic rise from the ashes in the mid-1980’s to become a darling of Wall Street and a symbol of rugged American determination. But, Harley-Davidson, at its core, is a story of a deep-seated understanding of and belief in an enduring brand and the brilliant management of that brand in the face of daunting odds.”

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Book Clyde Fessler


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