Summary. Building a comeback brand will require you to adopt a different mindset and approach than typical in a rebranding effort. It starts with asking the right question from the beginning to lay the groundwork for creating the best possible brand for your company.

The day was Thursday October 7, 2021, when Anthony learned his company had its best, most profitable quarter since he took on the role as CEO in 2017.


As Anthony’s company blew past its goal by the 22nd of that same month, he celebrated by buying the car he’d been fantasizing about for months – an arctic white 3LT Corvette.

The contract manufacturing company had nearly doubled in size under Anthony’s leadership, and by many indications, the future appeared to be as bright as the showroom shine of his new car.

But that bright, shiny future never came, seeming to get farther out of reach, month after month.

Something was wrong.

Business went from great to just okay.

Sales turned lukewarm.

The people Anthony added to the payroll started hunting for things (anything) to do to appear busy.

The company’s last three quarters showed a southerly trend.

Anthony calls an emergency executive meeting to seek the opinions of others to determine what could be causing the shift in tides.

Did a new competitor enter the market?

Did a competing company’s new game-changing offering seem more appealing?

Hey, where’s marketing?

Did something damage the company’s reputation?


When the good times were rolling, did the company take a little break from the hard work that paid off so well, allowing a status quo to take deep root within the culture of the organization?

Maybe just enough of a break to make it easier for a competitor to catch up, exploit the company’s weaknesses and appear a little more attractive to its current and prospective customers?

Let’s assume you’ve been retained as the company’s turnaround CEO. What would be your winning move to reverse the company’s unsettling trend?

  • Accept the situation and hope things improve?
  • Give a state-of-the-company pep talk to re-motivate and re-engage your people?
  • Make some internal changes and improvements? (e.g., spend more on marketing, expand sales incentives, build more brand visibility through networking, etc.)
  • Or do you get to work on building your comeback brand?

What would be more exciting to you? What would be more exciting for your team? What would be more exciting for your customers?

Deep down, you know the answer.

And no, I’m not necessarily talking about changing the name of the company. (Although, that may certainly be a consideration.)

Building a comeback brand

Building a comeback brand will require you and your team to start at the ground level, starting with the question:

“If I were to build a company that would put mine out of business, how would I do it?”

(Brand: A set of distinctions a company owns that make a positive and noteworthy difference in the lives of its customers.)

This question will naturally place you in the mindset needed to build the strongest possible comeback brand for your company. It will drive you to examine every component of your business from the ground up, starting with your business plan.

You will begin to tediously question everything within your plan. Along the way, you will make needed modifications based on the benefits of your 20/20 hindsight. You will look at yourself like you would a competitor – searching for your weaknesses and how you can exploit them as you formulate your comeback brand.

How will you outperform yourself in all those critical metrics, such as sales, market share, mind share, innovation, etc? What changes will you need to make? How will you redefine and build your company culture? What values will you need to adopt? What’s your new strategy?

Most importantly, what will be your company’s new mindset?

You’ll ask yourself if the people who helped you get to where your company is today are the same people who will help you get to your next destination in terms of sales, market share, and mind share. I’ll never forget hearing from a business owner who revealed that some of the friends and family he leaned on to help him start his business were not the same people who would help him leap into a leadership position in his industry. He said one of the most painful things he had to do was to let some of them go. (However, they did receive some very handsome severance packages.) Likewise, you’ll need to determine if you have the people and culture you need to build and launch your comeback brand.

And let’s not underestimate marketing opportunities. People love “comebacks,” whether it is an athlete, an actor, or yes, a brand. A comeback is something new. It arouses curiosity and interest. It gives prospective customers a reason to try your company while giving former customers inspiring reasons to give your brand another shot.

If you’re looking for examples of higher-profile brands that came back from the depths of the abyss, click here.

Ask yourself, is it time to pump new life into your brand? Is it time to freshen up and update your why along with renewed value propositions and a new brand promise? Is it time to reassess your values and approach your business and customers from a new direction?

If this got you thinking, contact us and let us help. Brand development, brand rehab and brand renovation is what we do.