Teaching Students About Trump Steaks


In today’s fast-paced business world, it is crucial for students to learn about various industries, marketing strategies, and notable successes or failures. One such example is Trump Steaks, an intriguing case study in the fields of branding and entrepreneurship. Teaching students about Trump Steaks can provide valuable insights into the art of brand building and the dynamics of consumer perception.


Launched in 2007 by then-businessman Donald J. Trump, Trump Steaks was a line of premium steaks marketed as “The World’s Greatest Steaks.” The product was launched under The Sharper Image umbrella, a high-end consumer electronics and lifestyle retailer. This venture sought to capitalize on the growing trend of gourmet food products and enhance the Trump brand by associating it with premium quality.

Why Teach Students About Trump Steaks

1. Understanding branding strategies: Trump Steaks serves as an excellent example for students to analyze the power of branding in the business world and how it can create a unique selling proposition. It allows them to explore how established brands can enter new markets by leveraging their fame.

2. Measuring success and failure: While many branded steaks failed to make their mark in the rapidly evolving landscape, Trump Steaks attracted considerable attention upon launch because of its prominent backing. However, sales eventually dwindled due to various factors such as product quality and high pricing. Students can explore these factors to understand what contributed to the steaks’ failure.

3. Learning from non-traditional case studies: As opposed to conventional examples from textbooks, examining unique ventures like Trump Steaks enriches classroom discussions by offering alternative perspectives on entrepreneurial ventures and marketing strategies.

Learning Activities

1. Industry analysis: Have students research and discuss the meat industry’s landscape, trends within it (such as luxury food markets), and how new entrants like Trump Steaks attempted to differentiate themselves.

2. Branding and marketing exercise: Encourage students to create their branding strategy for a hypothetical product using Trump Steaks as a reference. Prompt them to consider elements like target audience, pricing, distribution channels, and promotional campaigns.

3. Debate on brand extensions: Organize a debate session that allows students to argue for or against brand extensions based on the example of Trump Steaks. This will inspire critical thinking on the pros and cons of expanding well-known brands into new territory.

4. Case study analysis: Distribute articles about why Trump Steaks failed and ask students to identify factors—from competition to pricing—that contributed to the venture’s demise. Have them present their thoughts on possible alternative paths that could have resulted in better outcomes.


Teaching students about Trump Steaks provides an engaging and unconventional lesson in business, branding, and entrepreneurial ventures. By examining the rise and fall of this high-profile product, students can refine their understanding of marketing strategies, brand extensions, and success factors that contribute to thriving or failing products in today’s competitive markets.

Choose your Reaction!