Brands That Stay Relevant in a Changing World
It’s difficult to see large corporations as they once were, small start-ups that few people thought had a chance for success. However, every company started somewhere, and most that changed the world took serious risks before they solidified as the business we now know. But how did iconic companies — Apple and Goodyear — go from start-up to super power? Here’s a look at how they rose and stayed at the top of industries that constantly change and keeping their brand relevant in a changing world.
Apple started in 1976 when Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak set up the business in Jobs’ garage. Their first order was from the Byte Shop, which was the only computer store chain in the United States at the time. Despite a financial crunch and working long hours to produce 50 units for the Byte Shop, Jobs and Wozniak met the deadline on time. Within a year they would secure hundreds of thousands of dollars in investments, venture capital and bank loans.
However, by 1985 Jobs was forced out of the company he had helped found, and by 1989 Apple was in decline. Without Jobs at the helm, the company launched a series of unsuccessful consumer products that further led to Apple’s decline.
In 1996 then CEO of Apple, Gil Amelio brought Jobs back, and after Amelio himself stepped down from the CEO position, Steve Jobs was named interim replacement. In 1998 the iMac was released, returning the company’s profitability and standing as an innovative leader.
Three years later, Jobs and Apple released another product that changed the world — the first iPod. Jobs used cunning marketing that put focus on Apple products being nonconformist. iMac and Apple product users were seen as entrepreneurial and self-motivators — and to this day, five years after Jobs’ death, Apple still holds to its core of innovation and nonconformist roots.
Goodyear’s history started way back in 1898, when Frank Seiberling borrowed $3,500 from his brother-in-law. He used this loan to buy an abandoned strawboard factory. The Wingfoot trademark was first used in the Saturday Evening Post in 1901, and by 1907 Henry Ford purchased 1,200 sets of Goodyear tires for the Ford Model-T. Goodyear then went on to found the first cross-country truck line from Akron to Boston in 1917, nicknamed the Wingfoot Express.
In the years that followed, Goodyear — much as Apple has done in the late 20th and early 21st century — continued to innovate and manufacture better, more useful products for consumers. In 1947 Goodyear developed the first nylon tire, and with the continued advance of technology, the innovations continued, as did the long tradition of the Goodyear Blimp, which first took flight in 1912, and is still an iconic marketing symbol in the United States.
More recently, Goodyear has worked with NASA in the development of airless tires, known as Spring Tires, for the Mars Rover and expeditions to the moon. Today with annual sales of more than $15 billion, people can purchase Goodyear tires online as well as in stores all across the globe.
Both these companies started small, both by ambitious men. Goodyear is a multi-generational company that has truly stood the test of time and has adapted to the needs of the common consumer, as well as the specialized institution.
Apple, on the other hand, proves itself every day. While it hasn’t been as steadfast in longevity — indeed, having faced likely bankruptcy in its darkest hour — there is perhaps no other company that has changed the world in recent years more than the company with its humble beginnings in one man’s garage.
Have you taken your brand as far as it can go? Are you thinking about selling your business and move to your next challenge? Would you like to know the value of your business? If you would like more information please visit my website Business valuation.
For more immediate help you are welcome to send an email to Andrew Rogerson or give me a call on 916 570-2674.