The strength of a brand is often one of the most vital elements of a company’s potential for sales. Sometimes the wrong type of reputation can make it difficult for a company to experience positive sales. The following companies made fundamental changes to their business models that resulted in massive reversals of fortune and healthy sales.
1. McDonald’s goes from fry town to salad city
A few decades ago the concept of going into a McDonald’s to order a salad would have been laughable, but today the company has vastly enhanced its bottom line by diversifying its menu.
By expanding from its traditional line of super fat-filled burgers and French fries into a menu full of salads and trendy coffee drinks, the company was able to make it through the recession as one of the only profitable fast food companies in the United States.
2. Harley-Davidson turns its fortunes around
Once known as a brand that was more apt to break down than provide a solid motorcycle ride, Harley-Davidson was near bankruptcy in the 1980s. The company owed a tremendous amount of debt in that decade, and the company wasn’t selling new bikes.
To combat this downward trend, the management at the company decided to put all of its effort into improving the reputation of the brand and its reliability. The result was that the company entered the new millennium as one of the most profitable and reliable motorcycle brands on the planet.
3. Pabst Blue Ribbon taps China
Adored by cheap beer fans everywhere, Pabst Blue Ribbon was never a beer sold in highbrow establishments, but a smart idea from someone at the brewery involved marketing the beer to the Chinese and residents of that country became so enamored of the lager that the selling price became a whopping $44.
Numbers suggest that there are more active beer drinkers in China than anywhere else on the planet, and this means that investing in Chinese sales was a boon for Pabst Brewing Company, who had suffered for years under the reputation of being a cheap beer.
4. Burberry goes from frumpy to luxury
An older brand created over a century and a half ago, Burberry’s biggest fans have often been royalty and celebrities, but the reputation of the brand was failing a few years ago as it was considered something worn more often by gang members or frumpy grandmothers instead of anyone with a hint of style.
With a new emphasis on marketing to young fashion trendsetters like Kate Moss and Emma Watson, the brand picked up steam and entered a new phase of popularity. The giant fashion breeding ground of China also served as a significant boost to the company’s fortunes.
5. J.Crew gets a new CEO and help from Michelle Obama
After years of plummeting sales, clothing company J.Crew was in danger of losing everything until new CEO Millard Drexler joined the company a decade ago to help the company’s struggling bottom line. After just a few years, the company turned a corner and earned a profit after several years of losses.
The company’s stock and fortunes were further boosted when First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama, was seen on a late night talk show in clothing from J.Crew.
The right endorsement or brand makeover can mean the difference between a successful year and a continued decline of sales for a company, and ensuring impressive sales requires creativity in marketing and brand management.