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10 Major Brands that will Disappear This Year—CHIEF’s Chris Lester on Fox News

Yesterday I had the pleasure of joining Tony Perkins on Fox News to discuss 24/7 Wall Street’s annual top ten list of brands predicted to disappear in 2013.

A common theme with all of the organizations on the list is that they have failed to recognize that the brand landscape has changed and brands are no longer static entities. Successful brands have a future vision and are changing constantly to keep up with it. Blame can’t be placed on their industries because they’re all inherently healthy—it’s the brands themselves that have failed to stay relevant.

For example, Talbots, the women’s fashion chain isn’t facing extinction because the fashion industry is in decline, they’re in trouble because they haven’t positioned their brand to keep up with rapidly changing markets and tastes—they’ve failed to realize that their previously loyal customer base has changed, has access to more choices and no longer see themselves in the context that Talbots would place them— conservative and middle aged. Identities are becoming much less age specific, and instead, lifestyle specific. Online and retail competitors have adjusted to fill that need and have kept pace with those markets.

Successful companies consider their “brand” one of their most valuable assets (if not their most valuable). They acknowledge that their success is a result of it and have formalized branding as a key business process. They’re putting much greater emphasis on exploring the fundamentals that drive their brands and are careful not to jeopardize or overextend them. The ten organizations on the list all put business ahead of their brand and are suffering the consequences.

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