See you on Mars!: SpaceX Brand Analysis

Here’s a new brand analysis of aerospace designer, manufacturer and launch service provider SpaceX, in celebration of International Day of Human Space Flight! It’s an American company founded by Elon Musk, and most people are probably familiar with both. So far, they have made a total of 117 launches since their establishment in 2002.

Fast facts

  • Name: SpaceX (or: Space Exploration Technologies Corp.)
  • Type: Private
  • Headquarters location: Hawthorne, California, USA
  • Founding date: 6 May 2002
  • Key people: Elon Musk (founder/CEO/CTO) and Gwynne Shotwell (president/COO)
  • Key stakeholders: SpaceX investors, employees and customers
  • Revenue: $2 billion in 2019
  • Logo design firm: RO-Studio

Branding strategies

Some of SpaceX’s core values are to be innovative and take further steps in space technology, with the end goal of enabling human life on Mars, their reason for establishment.

Elon Musk, also known for having founded Tesla and The Boring Company, likes to see how far he can go with technology development and change humanity through it. He is one of the most well-known figures in the world and has become an inspiration for many people. You could say that he has become a brand himself, a personal brand, and it can be seen as one of the factors for the worldwide attention SpaceX has gained.

Other factors worth noting are SpaceX’s significant “series of historic milestones”. With achieving “the world’s first reflight of an orbital class rocket”, and many more ‘firsts’ and ‘onlys’, it’s hard not to see the reason for their success as a distinct brand.

One of their biggest competitors would be Blue Origin, founded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. As the two richest businessmen, their image contributes majorly in the prominence of these aerospace companies. What makes SpaceX stand out is that Blue Origin is behind by quite a lot in terms of technology and launches. On top of that, Musk has a clearer goal (getting us to Mars) and seems to show a stronger belief in what he does and his rockets.

A genuine brand

As mentioned before, Spacex values innovation and in order to be truly innovative, they put great care in recruiting solely innovative and creative experts through an exhausting hiring process. 

Regarding their mission for the colonization of Mars, essentially the only way the brand could live up to itself, is if they actually succeed in creating a strong human presence on this Red Planet. People may have doubted or still doubt the possibility of this happening, but over the years, SpaceX has actively been developing new technology and Musk is confident that their first human landing will occur in 2024, and a crewed flight in 2026.

Brand opportunities

SpaceX could, for example, improve its brand by getting more people in the world involved on this topic. To start conversations and promote the idea of Mars colonization. This way, more and more people will believe it and become familiar with it, and therefore strengthen the reliance in SpaceX.

Of course, SpaceX must succeed in their mission to upkeep their strong reputation and perhaps end up in history books of the future. Additionally, Elon Musk could grow his personal brand further and ensure that he and Spacex always appear positively in the news, for instance.

Conclusion

SpaceX has done well from a branding perspective, and we expect they’ll continue to do so in the future. It’s clear that the name and face of Elon Musk has helped a lot towards growing such a large aerospace brand. After all, most news articles about the company don’t go without the mention of his name. Obviously, SpaceX has also made a lot of their own achievements as just a regular company, but it shows how much a powerful and inspiring figure can influence a company to that extent.

Some of our work

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