That's what Apple did after the Newton disaster. The brand resurfaced as the creator of the iPhone.
Or a distressed brand can simply be knocked off its game.
Continually it will stumble. That has been the trajectory of Diet Coke.
On its first commercial on the Superbowl, it was trying to introduce four new flavors, including mango. The message which came across was: We're trying so hard to be cool. I only knew about the four flavors because I follow consumer-products news.
Currently, on television the face of Diet Coke is a Millennial walking confidently on a city sidewalk, declaring drinking the beverage makes her feel her.
Well, that "her" is probably someone she doesn't want to be. That would be me, a Baby Boomer, who offered to bring a beverage to a Buddhist workshop. That was 16 months ago. I never ever again allowed myself to be seen in public with Diet Coke - or any cola.
The members of the workshop didn't touch the Diet Coke. Someone else had brought bottles of water. Those went quickly. On the way out, one nice young man asked me if I needed help navigating the ice to my car.
Generation X, Millennials and iGens resent our leadership positions, jobs, and space in the start-up territory. Those should all be theirs.
We also are using entitlements such as Social Security and Medicare. They may never have a crack at those. For that, they blame us.
We can even be as inappropriate as to give unsolicited advice.
Worse of all, we may do screen time to research a question, not just ask Alexa.
And, sometime back when GE and IBM were the places to work (now laggards), we were the Organization Men and Organization Women who guzzled Diet Cokes late into the night as we did face time.
Believe me, my grand nephews and grand nieces know all about that. They also know we would never be hired by what Scott Galloway calls "The Four" - Google, Facebook, Apple, and Amazon.
The Me I want to be drinks water, maintains a low profile about professional life, doesn't crow about the security of having Medicare, isn't loose-lipped with advice, knows Alexa intimately, and has done proper amends about being a Corporate Clone.
And then its marketers have to create an ecosystem, like the one Disney has and Barbie had. That will integrate the rebrand into every aspect of daily life as well as special days.
Me. Since that humiliation at the workshop, I make it my business not to be labeled "old." I should have known better. After all, I do coach over-50 professionals how to continue to make a buck, no matter what.
Coaching on all aspects of aging, from careers to managing finances. Complimentary consultation. Sliding scale fees. Please contact aging expert Jane Genova firstname.lastname@example.org. Read her syndicated site https://over-50.typepad.com.