Six of the Best: Farewell edition ~ Brand Mix

Friday, April 24, 2009

Six of the Best: Farewell edition

Thank God, I hope you're not saying. But I don't mean me. I mean farewell to some brands and businesses that bit, are apparently about to bite or are predicted to bite the dust. Here are the farewell stories of the week:

1) So Long, GeoCities: We Forgot You Still Existed: Yahoo! Tech
Ironic that this story from PC World was also published on Yahoo! Tech. Because GeoCities was Facebook and MySpace years before either existed but never saw the light of day after Yahoo! acquired it for a crazy $4.7 billion back in 1999. For some examples of the GeoCities classic member homepages, see here.

2) GM Ready To Scrap Pontiac Brand: NPR
Frank Langfitt and Michelle Norris discuss GM's expected elimination of Pontiac: "its next most vulnerable brand." Poor sales, low prices, condemned to "niche" brand status with no long term development plans, this was all but inevitable. The days of the GTO and TransAm long gone. Yet more bad news for Michigan and especially, in this case, the town of Pontiac.

3) The Top 12 Brands Likely to Disappear: Seeking Alpha (via @russhmeyer)
As the recession continues, an analysis by 24/7 Wall Street predicts that a number of well-known brands are likely to disappear before the end of 2010, based on current business performance. The top three on the list are #1 Budget, #2 Borders and #3 Crocs. Followed up later with the top 12 brands likely to survive despite present troubles. that list includes: Sears, The New York Times and Skechers

4) The Kindle—friend or foe?
This was quite the week for predictions about the end of eras. I wrote about how Google, in one single day, had announced plans that will 'kill' newspapers, Facebook and all corporate home pages. Meanwhile, here's Ann Evans wondering if Kindle will do away with books and libraries. The New York Times was also considering whether Kindle is a good or bad thing for the publishing industry.

5) White Space is to make money - GE Homeland Protection: The Phoenix Principle
GE has announced that it's selling 81% of its Homeland Protection business to Safran, a French company. As Adam Hartung comments, the market for airport security has not developed the way it was expected to post 9/11 so GE has pulled the plug. The lesson: "When you have White Space projects, you have to manage them for results, not just let them run." GE could have continued trying to make this business work but it decided the better course was to exit and try something else.

6) The Mainstream Adoption Curve: Logic+Emotion
David Armano charts the path from OMG to :-(

That's it! See you here on the blog or on Twitter (@martinjbishop) for more stories from the world of brand strategy.

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