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Old 03-14-2019, 09:29 PM
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Most ridiculous brand extension


Marketers have long realized the “power” of extending a product line by adding new flavours, healthier versions, or making other minor changes. This gives the product more shelf space and presumably increases sales.

I used to like to grocery shop in the US. Occasionally you would see a WTF item like bubble gum flavoured dog chews.

But it can be taken to extremes. I like plain flavoured Triscuits. Nice with cheese. Few ingredients. Even slightly more fibre than some crackers.

Then they came out with “ThinCrisps” and “Organic Triscuit” ($2 more) which are essentially similar to the original. Then one chemically-tasting flavour after another - Gouda, avocado, black pepper, rosemary... I think they have at least 10 flavours. They take up lots of space and only the original ones seem to be perpetually sold out or have just a few boxes left.

I’m sure this idea applies to other products. What is the worst example of “original is best” WTF brand extension?
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Old 03-14-2019, 09:51 PM
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At least the examples you cite are variations on the original product. John Deere (you may have seen their green farm equipment) has a line of toys.
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Old 03-15-2019, 12:24 AM
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KISS slaps their name on anything that stays still long enough for it to stick. http://www.kissarmywarehouse.com/

Same with Harley-Davidson.
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Old 03-15-2019, 01:52 AM
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At least the examples you cite are variations on the original product. John Deere (you may have seen their green farm equipment) has a line of toys.
But those are just toy versions of stuff they do make - so, it's advertising that you get parents to pay for. Brilliant, not ridiculous.
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Old 03-15-2019, 05:34 AM
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Quaker Oats has sold rice cakes for a long time. You know, the dense, dry, puck-shaped thing, the size of a saucer, that tastes like cardboard but has only 35 calories per puck. They were called "Rice cakes" or "galettes de riz". They started adding flavours.

Then they came up with the Crispy Minis, which were tiny rice cakes flavoured like potato chips.

When they found that they had built some brand recognition with Crispy Minis, they renamed the full-sized rice cakes Crispy Minis as well. At least they could have called them Crispy Maxis or something.
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Old 03-15-2019, 09:47 AM
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I was just pondering this the other day. How many more ways can they possibly re-invent:

Oreos
Snickers
Doritos
Potato chips
Cheetos
Pizza crust
Pizza in general
Coke & Diet Coke
Mountain Dew
Reese's Peanut Butter Cups
Peeps

I'm sure there's more that I'm forgetting.

The thing is, IF I try a new flavor or re-invention, I rarely buy it again. I usually go back to the original.
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Old 03-15-2019, 09:58 AM
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Trump Presidency.

I'll see myself out.
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Old 03-15-2019, 10:00 AM
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I never understood why an Umbrella company would get into the business of making zombies.
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Old 03-15-2019, 10:48 AM
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I was just pondering this the other day. How many more ways can they possibly re-invent:

Oreos

...

The thing is, IF I try a new flavor or re-invention, I rarely buy it again. I usually go back to the original.
IIRC, there was a recent poll for new flavors for Oreo stuffing and one of the top vote-getters was "cookies & cream" flavor.

Yes, that means people wanted Oreo-flavored Oreos.
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Old 03-15-2019, 10:53 AM
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Two words:


Budweiser meat

https://www.eater.com/2019/3/12/1826...-meat-products

Quote:
Budweiser may shy away from corn syrup in its recipes, but it’s happily partnering with a corn-fed meat brand Coleman Natural on a new line of beer-infused pork products. The “all-natural” meat supplier announced last week that it is teaming up with the beer giant to “reinvigorate” grocery aisles with Budweiser jalapeño cheddar beer brats, Budweiser barbecue sauce-slathered St. Louis ribs, and pulled pork.
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Old 03-15-2019, 11:22 AM
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...
When they found that they had built some brand recognition with Crispy Minis, they renamed the full-sized rice cakes Crispy Minis as well. At least they could have called them Crispy Maxis or something.
As a woman who has used menstrual pads, "Crispy Maxi" is not a pleasant product image...

I am still amazed by the variety of pregnancy tests. Sure, make them more accurate, make them more sensitive. That's an improvement. But who needs a freaking digital screen to say whether they're pregnant or not? One line = no. Two lines = yes. Or the ones with the curved handles so you don't pee on your hand. If you're not willing to risk a little pee on your hand, you're not ready to have a baby. (BTW, I've used my share of regular pregnancy tests, and I've never once peed on my hand.)
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Old 03-15-2019, 11:23 AM
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When they found that they had built some brand recognition with Crispy Minis, they renamed the full-sized rice cakes Crispy Minis as well. At least they could have called them Crispy Maxis or something.
Probably afraid of bringing feminine hygiene products to mind.

What makes me sad is when a venerated brand's company goes belly up and the vultures buy the name and slap it on anything they can get a hold of. Poloroid, for example is appearing on some of the damndest stuff lately. I mean, come on, shoes?
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Old 03-15-2019, 11:29 AM
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It worked when a music box company expanded to vacuum cleaners.

As far a Triscuits, the Hint of Salt variety is a great idea (even better than the original) and the rosemary and olive oil version is terrific.
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Old 03-15-2019, 11:33 AM
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Last time I went shopping I noticed Crispy Minis were being sold in several fruit and vegetable flavours. Seemed odd to me.
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Old 03-15-2019, 11:44 AM
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But those are just toy versions of stuff they do make - so, it's advertising that you get parents to pay for. Brilliant, not ridiculous.
A new combine can cost $250,000 and up, while a heavy duty tractor can run $100,000. Ain't no toy that's going to convince a farmer to choose Deere over Case.
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Old 03-15-2019, 12:23 PM
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A new combine can cost $250,000 and up, while a heavy duty tractor can run $100,000. Ain't no toy that's going to convince a farmer to choose Deere over Case.
Maybe not, but I know a few farmers, and there's quite a bit of brand loyalty for farming equipment. I figure that the toys are there to start building brand loyalty among potential future farmers.
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Old 03-15-2019, 12:29 PM
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This phenomenon is what bought us the pretzel M&M, so I am all for it. Those things are so good.
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Old 03-15-2019, 12:36 PM
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Back in the mid 1970s, Kraft had a line of flavored peanut butters that bombed, terribly.

Except at our house. The at-time stepmother was an executive assistant @ Kraft and she brought home the worst peanut butter ever conceived by the hand of man, and refused to buy more until we at all of it. The banana-flavored PB. The chocolate-flavored PB. The strawberry-flavored PB.

Ugh.
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Old 03-15-2019, 12:51 PM
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"Improving" is often a gigantic bust!

The idiotic idea that Coca-Cola needed "improving" has got to be the worst-ever marketing decision! After weeks of screaming by consumers, the Powers That Be firmly clamped their tails between their legs and brought back original Coke.

There was a brief period of schizophrenia with "New Coke" and "Classic Coke."

I want to stand on my soapbox and scream, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"


~VOW
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Old 03-15-2019, 12:58 PM
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I never understood why an Umbrella company would get into the business of making zombies.
+1

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Originally Posted by VOW View Post
"Improving" is often a gigantic bust!

The idiotic idea that Coca-Cola needed "improving" has got to be the worst-ever marketing decision! After weeks of screaming by consumers, the Powers That Be firmly clamped their tails between their legs and brought back original Coke.

There was a brief period of schizophrenia with "New Coke" and "Classic Coke."

I want to stand on my soapbox and scream, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"


~VOW
Came in to post the exact same thought!
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Old 03-15-2019, 01:11 PM
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Back in the mid 1970s, Kraft had a line of flavored peanut butters that bombed, terribly.

Except at our house. The at-time stepmother was an executive assistant @ Kraft and she brought home the worst peanut butter ever conceived by the hand of man, and refused to buy more until we at all of it. The banana-flavored PB. The chocolate-flavored PB. The strawberry-flavored PB.

Ugh.
'Koogle', wasn't it?
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Old 03-15-2019, 01:18 PM
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Coke (and Pepsi for that matter) with cherry coke, vanilla coke, lemon coke, lime coke and perhaps some other oddballs. Not that any one was really that good, but carried the coke name, so get placement.
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Old 03-15-2019, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by VOW View Post
"Improving" is often a gigantic bust!

The idiotic idea that Coca-Cola needed "improving" has got to be the worst-ever marketing decision! After weeks of screaming by consumers, the Powers That Be firmly clamped their tails between their legs and brought back original Coke.

There was a brief period of schizophrenia with "New Coke" and "Classic Coke."

I want to stand on my soapbox and scream, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"


~VOW
I don't disagree, but in the end, I wonder if this wasn't a net gain for them.

"Coca-Cola Classic" is a phrase that was entered into the American Lexicon because of this and a rather clever marketing campaign.

Last edited by Grrr!; 03-15-2019 at 01:21 PM.
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Old 03-15-2019, 01:21 PM
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Holy shit, that's it!

Yeah, they stopped making it pretty soon (a few years) after launch, and Betty 2 (stepmom) brought cases of the shit home one day.

I took to making PB sandwiches and immediately throwing them away, my only goal to make it through that shit as fast as possible. Took months.

God, it was just crap.
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Old 03-15-2019, 01:23 PM
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The most extreme one that I know of is that my mom's canning jars were made by the same company as the Hubble Space Telescope's optics.
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Old 03-15-2019, 01:38 PM
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Maybe not, but I know a few farmers, and there's quite a bit of brand loyalty for farming equipment. I figure that the toys are there to start building brand loyalty among potential future farmers.
Indeed. My first 11 years were in a tiny farming community in Illinois, where some kids wanted toy versions of the equipment they saw every day. One of my friends had a John Deere pedal tractor.

Last edited by Skywatcher; 03-15-2019 at 01:39 PM.
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Old 03-15-2019, 02:42 PM
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Back in the mid 1970s, Kraft had a line of flavored peanut butters that bombed, terribly.

Except at our house. The at-time stepmother was an executive assistant @ Kraft and she brought home the worst peanut butter ever conceived by the hand of man, and refused to buy more until we at all of it. The banana-flavored PB. The chocolate-flavored PB. The strawberry-flavored PB.

Ugh.
Remember the alternative-colored margarine from a few years ago? Pink, blue, that kind of thing, allegedly to appeal to children? Nope, that didn't work. Food pantries and homeless shelters said they wouldn't take it either, so IIRC the companies ended up using it as animal feed.
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Old 03-15-2019, 03:41 PM
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Jim Beam has come out with a line of bourbon-flavored barbecue sauces and promotes them to the extent that I have seen them listed on restaurant menus.

I like a good tangy or (to a limited extent) hot barbecue sauce, but don't really crave "a lick of bourbon" in it.
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"Improving" is often a gigantic bust!...I want to stand on my soapbox and scream, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"
Obviously you have no future in computer software.
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Old 03-15-2019, 04:45 PM
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This phenomenon is what bought us the pretzel M&M, so I am all for it. Those things are so good.
Speaking of M&Ms... I saw a commercial the other day for an M&M candy bar -- a chocolate bar with (chunks of) M&Ms embedded in it. Wasn't the whole idea behind M&Ms in the first place that you wouldn't get chocolate all over your hands from eating a chocolate bar? I guess that ship has sailed.
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Old 03-15-2019, 06:32 PM
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The most extreme one that I know of is that my mom's canning jars were made by the same company as the Hubble Space Telescope's optics.
"Goodness gracious, but this lid just will not fit on here!"
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Old 03-15-2019, 07:04 PM
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A new combine can cost $250,000 and up, while a heavy duty tractor can run $100,000. Ain't no toy that's going to convince a farmer to choose Deere over Case.
Sure, but the toys are more likely to convince the suburban parents to buy John Deere lawn tractors for their lawns. And I'm sure Deere gets a cut of price of the toy anyway in licensing, so they win all around.

Also I think your estimates of equipment costs are out of date; used machines will go for at least those prices these days. The biggest tractors have broken the half-million dollar mark new.
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Old 03-15-2019, 07:42 PM
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The most extreme one that I know of is that my mom's canning jars were made by the same company as the Hubble Space Telescope's optics.
The primary mirror for the Hubble telescope was made by Perkin-Elmer, which was, at the time, owned by Hughes Aircraft, which was in turn owned by General Motors. So one joke was the mirror was made by a company whose main products included mirrors with, "Warning: Objects in mirror are closer than they appear" (referring of course to the side view mirrors in GM vehicles).
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Old 03-15-2019, 08:55 PM
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The primary mirror for the Hubble telescope was made by Perkin-Elmer, which was, at the time, owned by Hughes Aircraft, which was in turn owned by General Motors.
Some 40 years ago, Armour & Company (you know, the hot dog & Hormel chili people) was owned by Greyhound.
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Old 03-15-2019, 09:08 PM
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I do remember one summer when Jello went crazy and came out with cotton candy, root beer, and some flavour full of blue dye that turned stool green.

I don’t recall (thankfully) flavoured peanut butter. But in addition to chocolate milk syrup — there was a time when strawberry and banana milks were popular.
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Old 03-15-2019, 09:14 PM
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Didn't Heinz ketchup come in weird colors a few years ago?
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Old 03-15-2019, 09:19 PM
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Remember green catsup? I mean, it kind of made sense, inasmuch as people have been known to do things with green tomatoes (we has a fantastic spicy pickled green tomato appetizer at a cajun place in Shreveport). Then they decided, why stop at green, let's go purple!

Now there is only red.
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Old 03-15-2019, 10:31 PM
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— there was a time when strawberry and banana milks were popular.
I have never seen banana milk -- that sounds like it might be good -- but you can get strawberry milk in the usual convenience-store places in Toronto. I do remember seeing blueberry milk briefly. It didn't last.
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Old 03-15-2019, 11:04 PM
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"Improving" is often a gigantic bust!...I want to stand on my soapbox and scream, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"
The market geniuses will shout right back: "If it ain't broke, fix it 'til it is!"
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Old 03-15-2019, 11:21 PM
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I do remember one summer when Jello went crazy and came out with cotton candy, root beer, and some flavour full of blue dye that turned stool green.

I don’t recall (thankfully) flavoured peanut butter. But in addition to chocolate milk syrup — there was a time when strawberry and banana milks were popular.
I've seen strawberry- and banana-flavored milks recently. I've ever seen "Chocolate Mint Eggnog" which I heard was very good. My brother and his wife tried those fruit-flavored milks on their younger daughter until they finally realized that she just plain old doesn't like milk.

Yamaha makes motorcycles AND musical instruments. That's also quite a stretch.
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Old 03-16-2019, 12:24 AM
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There was this beverage, years ago, named after the part of a blade that fits inside the handle. They started out with the orange flavor and marketed it using astronauts. Then they added grape and grapefruit flavors. I think the orange flavor is still around, but the others are long gone.

(For some reason, when I was a teenager, I would buy the grape flavor and eat the powder right out of the jar. I did not like the grape beverage, but the powder was addictive)
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Old 03-16-2019, 01:42 AM
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actually, jif and skippy try flavored PB every so often .... one of the better attempts was an apple cinnamon one

i remember when Reese's PB in a jar first came out ..every kid who tried it was pissed there wasn't chocolate in it .......
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Old 03-16-2019, 08:21 AM
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There was this beverage, years ago, named after the part of a blade that fits inside the handle. They started out with the orange flavor and marketed it using astronauts. Then they added grape and grapefruit flavors. I think the orange flavor is still around, but the others are long gone.

(For some reason, when I was a teenager, I would buy the grape flavor and eat the powder right out of the jar. I did not like the grape beverage, but the powder was addictive)
Are you talking about Tang? Why would you not name it? And while it might coincidentally look like the metal piece “tang” I don’t think it was “named after” it. It’s from “tangy,” referring to a sour fruity flavor.
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Old 03-16-2019, 05:47 PM
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There was this beverage, years ago, named after the part of a blade that fits inside the handle. They started out with the orange flavor and marketed it using astronauts. Then they added grape and grapefruit flavors. I think the orange flavor is still around, but the others are long gone.

(For some reason, when I was a teenager, I would buy the grape flavor and eat the powder right out of the jar. I did not like the grape beverage, but the powder was addictive)

Only in the U.S. They sell many other flavors in other countries. I really want to try the mango sometime.
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Old 03-16-2019, 07:13 PM
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Only in the U.S. They sell many other flavors in other countries.

Also in the US.
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Old 03-17-2019, 02:42 AM
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Yamaha makes motorcycles AND musical instruments. That's also quite a stretch.
The large Japanese conglomerates have been making widely diverse products from before WWII.
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Old 03-17-2019, 08:57 AM
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"Improving" is often a gigantic bust!

The idiotic idea that Coca-Cola needed "improving" has got to be the worst-ever marketing decision! After weeks of screaming by consumers, the Powers That Be firmly clamped their tails between their legs and brought back original Coke.

There was a brief period of schizophrenia with "New Coke" and "Classic Coke."

I want to stand on my soapbox and scream, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"


~VOW
Except the PTB thought 'old' Coke was broken.
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Originally Posted by Snopes
The early 1980s found Coke teetering on the edge of losing the cola war to Pepsi. The previous fifteen years saw Coca-Cola‘s market share remain flat while Pepsi’s continued to climb. Pepsi was winning in the supermarkets (where shoppers had free rein to choose either beverage), and it was only Coke’s greater availability in restricted markets (such as soda vending machines and fast food outlets) that was keeping its numbers ahead of Pepsi’s. (Coke’s market share had been shrinking for decades, from 60% just after World War II to under 24% in 1983.)
In blind taste tests people preferred the taste of the new Coke formula (Basically Diet Coke with HFCS replacing the artificial sweeteners) over the traditional formula and the hated rival.

What they then discovered was that advertising works; generations of building brand loyalty overcame what people really liked.
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Old 03-17-2019, 09:59 AM
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At least the examples you cite are variations on the original product. John Deere (you may have seen their green farm equipment) has a line of toys.
John Deere has made toy tractors for a heck of a long time.

Dennis
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Old 03-17-2019, 10:15 AM
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Marketers have long realized the “power” of extending a product line by adding new flavours, healthier versions, or making other minor changes. This gives the product more shelf space and presumably increases sales.

I used to like to grocery shop in the US. Occasionally you would see a WTF item like bubble gum flavoured dog chews.

But it can be taken to extremes. I like plain flavoured Triscuits. Nice with cheese. Few ingredients. Even slightly more fibre than some crackers.

Then they came out with “ThinCrisps” and “Organic Triscuit” ($2 more) which are essentially similar to the original. Then one chemically-tasting flavour after another - Gouda, avocado, black pepper, rosemary... I think they have at least 10 flavours. They take up lots of space and only the original ones seem to be perpetually sold out or have just a few boxes left.
... and the one and only flavor that is heads & shoulders better than the original (and vastly superior to all those echemical-tasting flavours) is RYE Triscuits. And they're annoyingly hard to find.
  #49  
Old 03-17-2019, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by VOW View Post
"Improving" is often a gigantic bust!

The idiotic idea that Coca-Cola needed "improving" has got to be the worst-ever marketing decision! After weeks of screaming by consumers, the Powers That Be firmly clamped their tails between their legs and brought back original Coke.

There was a brief period of schizophrenia with "New Coke" and "Classic Coke."

I want to stand on my soapbox and scream, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"


~VOW
All She Called About

If you are unfamiliar with Negativland's brilliant Dispepsi recording, an entire album searing of marketing and consumerism all based on soda/Pepsi/Coke commercials and the idiocy surrounding them, then look it up. Possibly their finest work.
  #50  
Old 03-17-2019, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Dr_Paprika View Post
But in addition to chocolate milk syrup — there was a time when strawberry and banana milks were popular.
I've seen strawberry and banana liquid yoghurt (which ok, if they say it's yoghurt I'll believe it) all over Western Europe, most recently this morning in Normandy.
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