Happy New Year 2017! We hope that you had a blast over the holiday season, and you’re greeting the new year with energy and optimism.

The new year is traditionally a time of new beginnings with many making resolutions for improvement, to create a new, better self (whether or not said attempts are successful is another story!)

So in the spirit of renewal, for our Bullet today we thought we would examine brands that gave themselves new starts by way of a brand revamp.

Companies rebrand for various purposes – to keep up with the times, to catch up with competition, to reach a specific audience, to change perceptions about what their brands stand for. Sometimes their efforts do meet success.

Like Old Spice, which successfully refreshed their image- from what’s generally perceived grandfather’s deodorant to a product for their grandchildren. Their clever (and funny!) ads utilize Isaiah Mustafa as “the man your man could smell like” created a new brand experience and were a total hit, successfully injecting the Old Spice image with new life.

Apple is another frequently cited example of brand revamping success. In 1997 they were nearly bankrupt. But today they are a tech juggernaut whose brand is famous around the world. They did it by building creative, well-made products with beautiful packaging. Their ads are sleek and well-produced, hitting their target right in the sweet spot. Today, every launch of a new product creates a fresh frenzy and Steve Jobs has been lauded again and again as a genius.

And despite some cynicism and doubts of sincerity, it can be argued that 1Malaysia is also a successful effort to brand Malaysia. It is effective at evocating unity, it’s undeniably catchy, it immediately summons to mind the government of the day and its also flexible enough to apply to anything be it economic schemes, healthcare or education. In this case perhaps endless repetition has done its job drumming the message into the minds of the masses.


Some rebranding efforts are not successful in any sense of the word, receiving widespread criticism for being inconsistent with brand values, not very well thought out or simply meaningless.

Like BP’s logo rebrand, which is a sun symbolizing the company’s dedication to an environmentally friendly growth strategy. For a company whose core business is to exploit the environment and has been famously responsible for environmentally destructive accidents, this was indeed a tone-deaf effort.


The London Olympics 2012 logo is also a famous disaster, albeit one in design. To inject some modernity into a classic brand, the organizers created a strange, abstract logo that some have called ugly, childish and ridiculous. It sidelines the classic linked rings that are so evocative of the Olympics to the point of not making sense.


And lastly, also in the realm of not making sense is the rebrand of Andersen Consulting into Accenture, with the tagline “High performance. Delivered.” It is so generic as to tell the consumer absolutely nothing and can be applied to a variety of products while still being meaningless. The worst part? The rebrand cost the company $100 million to execute!


How would you go about a revamp of your brand if one was due?
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How would your brand participate in the golden age of the geek?

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