SmartCompany.com argues famous brands can learn a lot from the decades of $50 million per year plus success enjoyed by Australia's geatest hard rock band. The cut-thru message is: don't fuck with the brand that people already love :
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Classic, iconic products (think Coca-Cola as a long-bow example) never change their formula. They might introduce other new products, but at the core of the company's product range is the old favourite. An iconic product also lets you transcend generations, something Coke and AC/DC do very, very well.
That doesn't mean these brands don't innovate – last night's show was a perfect example of how AC/DC tweak their packaging (that is, the giant stage props used in the live show) while keeping the product (the songs) the same and cashing in over and over again.
The concert also taught me a lot about innovation in the area of brand extension. The amount of AC/DC merchandise being sold last night was incredible and the fans (many of whom were already clad in AC/DC T-shirts) were snapping the stuff up at an impressive rate.
So there's a lesson – when you find yourself with a product or service that your customers just love, be careful that you don't change it too much.