The 2014 Disney flick, Maleficent, was one of Disney’s biggest hit for the year when it brought home more than $700 million in sales worldwide. It was one of the most anticipated films at the time not only because it starred none other than Angelina Jolie, but also because the story itself was unique among Disney’s recent releases. Its story is surprisingly something we can relate to the ups and downs of business.

The story of Maleficent

Maleficent wasn’t about the princess who met a prince, fell in love and lived happily ever after. Instead it was a story of bravery, revenge and giving a whole new meaning to “true love’s kiss”. It was also about rising up after falling down.


Her story begs the question: “Is it really possible to makea great comeback after a horrific fall?”

Truth be told, it’s a complicated feat to achieve, especially in business. But it is possible. No matter how popular you are as a brand or a company, making a comeback that will actually work can be tricky. In order to rise to the top, you’ll need a new strategy, new perspective, and new ideas to present to your customers.

A business comeback sweeter than true love’s kiss

All businesses are susceptible to failing or dying down, which is one of the biggest reasons why it’s really important for businesses to constantly invent and reinvent themselves. What are some of the most popular brands who have suffered dying down, only to make a big comeback eventually?

Marvel

Yes. Once upon a time, Marvel’s superheroes failed to keep the company soaring in the sky. Marvel suffered a major setback in mid-90s when the market for comics died down. Approximately, two decades later, Marvel managed to stay afloat by branching out to other mediums like movies and television, tapping into an even wider audience gaining a bigger following.

Converse

Converse’s history goes back from early 1910s when they released their “All Star” line which were intricately designed basketball sneakers. As reported by Hubspot, the company made an even bigger name for itself when it signed basketball player Charles Hollis “Chuck” Taylor to market their new and unique line of sneakers.

While it sounded like a smooth flow for Converse throughout the decades, the brands’ popularity dwindled when competitors released their own line of shoes that were deemed trendier. What’s their solution? Make Chucks hip again!

In 2007, the company released a new campaign called “Chuck It” highlighting the history of Chucks, therefore making them trendy again. They subjected their campaign to young rebellious rockers, which made the campaign a big hit.

Disney

Disney hasn’t been living it’s happily ever after throughout these years. While they’ve been successful in making good stories, Disney’s popularity went from “wow” to “meh” after they released Hercules and Fantasia.

Disney’s descent continued until 2000s but the company made a huge comebackafter they dared to retell and spin classic stories in Tangled and Frozen.
Making a big comeback is never easy. Maleficent had to relearn what love was before she was able to let go of her anger and thirst for revenge.

You need to reassess your strategies and think of new concepts to sell your brand in order to make an effective comeback.

Go back to basics. Relearn the things you think you already know. Try working with new people. Use your brand’s best advantage. Rebrand if necessary. The key to a good comeback is knowing your advantage and finding new ways to use it.

Wennelle Jane Baldo
Wennelle Jane Baldo
Wenelle Baldo makes parallels between marketing and pop culture. It's what happens when you're obsessed with Batman, vintage films, and Tom Hiddleston.
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