This paper discusses the branding and marketing strategies implemented by the Italian medium-sized manufacturing firms in front of the effects of the economic downturn. Through the analysis of the Cesare Paciotti case, the Authors wish to explore the issue in the field of fashion and, in particular, in the footwear sector. The analysis is based on an exploratory qualitative research and it adopts the longitudinal case study methodology. The main results highlight the centrality of the brand strategy which enabled the Cesare Paciotti to transform itself from a shoe company into a luxury brand company and to support the business growth also during the economic downturn.
Keywords: Economic downturn, brand, fashion, luxury, footwear industry, medium-sized enterprise