Brands That are Back From the Dead

As someone who grew up in the 80s and 90s, I can tell you that there were a ton of toys that I remember that I wanted back when I was a wee lad (whatever that means). I can remember waking up on Saturday morning to watch Bugs Bunny and other random shows, while also being bombarded by commercials enticing me to buy the latest sugary cereal or action figure. Off the top of my head, I can remember that Furby was a huge seller when I was younger. I can also remember that Tamagotchi pets were also quite the craze. I can remember all the crazy cereal commercials and some cereals that didn't really last that long (anyone else remember hidden treasures cereal?) Needless to say, there are many companies that have their hey days and then end up fizzling out over time. I came across an interesting article from 24/7 Wallstreet that discussed some brands that seemed to lose their space on top, only to recently come back with a bang. Here are a few of them that stuck out to me.


Apparently, Lego has been around since 1932, which is amazing to me. I still have all of my own lego sets hanging around my parents' house somewhere, and enjoy putting the blocks together and making buildings and miniature block havens for my Lego men every now and again. Lego took a downhill turn starting in 2002 and suffered some huge losses. In fact, they almost went bankrupt in 2004. After examining its structure (no pun intended), Lego began to streamline their business and cut out many of the unpopular products and began selling again. Today it is the fourth largest toy manufacturing company in the world. Talk about a good rebound!

Old Spice

I have to be honest when I say I use Old Spice deodorant, but I wouldn't have been caught dead using their products a few years ago. To me, Old Spice meant that you smelled like a really old man, and let's face it...I'd rather smell like a mid 20s male (which I am finding now, most of them smell like body odor anyway). After dealing with losing potential buyers due to the fact that people looked at them as a scent for old men, they came out with new products and started to market towards a younger age demographic. The kicker for me, and probably most people, is their new TV spots. I'm sure most of us have seen the commercials that say "Look at your man, now back at me." It was brilliant, and increased their sales by 170%.


I can just remember now, watching my friends play on their nintendo. Yes, it was only 8 bits of graphics, but something about seeing Mario eat mushrooms and step on Goombas made me want a gaming console more than anything. Nintendo definitely had its fair share of failures along the way. One of their biggest console mistakes was introducing the Virtual Boy, in which the game was supposed to seem like virtual reality. In the end, it turned out to be a huge fail, and the product was pulled as well. Nintendo also ran into some snafus when they marketed the GameCube, mostly because they were up against Microsoft's XBox and also Sony's Playstation III. Both outsold the GameCube, and Nintendo definitely took some hits. Thankfully for them, the heads at Nintendo created the Wii, which brought the video game tycoon back to the top. The Wii was marketed more towards the family, and now there have been over 86 million consoles sold to date.

There's a list of six brands that have come back since taking a plunge here. I found it to be very interesting, and I also found the common theme among every brand was the way they marketed themselves. After launching failing marketing schemes, each and every one went back, revamped their ideas and created new ways to sell new products. In the end, it worked for all of them, and they are once again popular among pop culture. What hurting businesses do you feel could make a second trip to the top?

Are there any products you remember growing up that could be useful again today?

Seth P.