Resurrection of a brand: How three successful brands changed their fate

Written by Jonathan Hibberd on Thursday 29th March 2018

It’s a given that throughout time different brands will come and go as they rise and fall in popularity. Blockbuster, Woolworths, BHS, and even more recently Toys’R’Us, are all prime examples of once-beloved brands that have eventually fallen victim to the tides of time.

But what of the brands that were able to pull themselves back from the brink of disaster?

Here is a list of three of my favourite brands that, like the Terminator, have been able to bring the reprise and bring it hard.


Burberry, famous for its lines of luxury clothing, hasn’t always been able to maintain the revered public image it holds today. In the early 2000s, Burberry’s image suffered terribly as the brand became associated with English ‘chav’ and football hooliganism culture.

Industry experts have cited lower-priced products, a peak in the production of counterfeit items (a result of the brand’s own previous success), and adoption by celebrities associated with the cultures of the time.

Burberry took radical action to overturn their image wiping their famously trademarked (and most heavily chav-adopted) check-pattern from all but 10% of their products and making equally as bold economic decisions elsewhere. Fast-forward 13 years to present day and, much like Cascada’s ‘Everytime We Touch’, Burberry’s chavvy blip of the noughties is but a memory for the brand image of one of the most famous in the world.


Lego? Lego hasn’t ever struggled with its brand image has it? Well, actually it has. The 90s brought Lego dangerously close to bankruptcy as competition for children’s attention in the toys aisle heated up more than ever before. 

To rebuild their image Lego stripped their focus back to their core products, made a number of cuts and importantly, upped their adult-specific marketing. By tapping into the imaginations of adults worldwide, Lego rekindled fond memories of parents’ own childhoods and were able to induce a much-needed bolster to their sales.

Recently, despite Lego being able to expand their efforts once again (with particular success in the film industry), the company experienced the first decline in annual profits for more than a decade. With their history of strong comebacks and public adoration still as alive as ever, fingers both big and small across the globe will be crossed for another return to glory.

Old Spice

If you’d have asked everyone you knew what they thought of Old Spice in 2009, the only responses would've been a glowing review from your grandad and your younger cousin asking if you wanted to take the Old Spice smellies he got for Christmas off his hands.

This all changed in 2010 when Old Spice’s ‘The Man Your Man Could Smell Like’ ad campaign featuring a unique blend of comedy and a hunky ex-NFL player went viral, truly viral. The advert spread like wildfire across social media and over just its first 5 days of going live more people had seen the advert than Obama’s 2008 acceptance speech.

Amazingly, without any major changes to the product itself, Old Spice managed to dramatically change the public’s perception of their brand, boosted sales and became a shining example of the power of effective advertising. Hell, I know I’ve bought it before just so I could quote the advert in the shower.

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