The Comeback Kings

Consumer’s emotions for a brand are comparable to fire.
During the rosy period, it’s a blazing campfire, radiating heat and light and making everyone content around it.
When the brand hits a new low, we can barely see their flame flickering, through the dark void.
When they reach rock bottom, the fire is red-hot once again … ironically because everything is burning to the ground.

Unfortunately, some brands go through a notorious scandal or financial issue or some major morale-sapping quality issue- and that’s the end, they’re just never able to redeem themselves.
They give up and become part of history.

Some brands know how to manage the fire for the reason being that their marketers know how to win back the lost ground.
Fire-fighting is an adult game.
Extinguishing the flames and rekindling them shows the true character of anorganisation.

Once in a while, a popular brand falls off the grid.
That time is where they have two choices to make: accept defeat or bounce back with a comeback.
Here are 3 stories of 3 brands- who fought back against all odds.
They fought like never before.
They refused to give up.
And they are winning.Big time.


It has been a turbulent year for Samsung Mobile, the global leader in the mobile phone industry.
In August 2016, their renowned Galaxy Note 7 literally exploded and went down in flames with reports suggesting product flaws coming from the United States & China, etc.

The Seoul-headquartered company announced a global retraction of 2.5 million units, including the stock, which has yet to be sold.
These events kept the planet talking negatively about the company.
Most of the airlines refused Galaxy Note 7 to be carried by passengers.
Adding more to this controversy, Samsung Group’s chief Jay Y Lee was also at the center of a controversy that put theorganisation in the limelight.

In spite of the heat, Samsung became the 2nd most trusted brand in India in 2016, (from 16th position in 2015) recalling those peak times where Nokia overtook Colgate and became the most trusted brand.

How did Samsung pull off this miracle?
They went to extraordinary lengths to win back customer trust.
Highlighting the after-sales service, Samsung sent 535 completely equipped vans with engineers to 6,000 talukas all over the country to help customers even in remote areas.

They even launched the Smart Class program, which provides quality education to children across the social strata at over 350 Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya Schools.
They would also be providing the best-in-class technology like smart boards, tablets, laptops and printers.

Samsung has covered all possible aspects and worked hard on building their image though their main products.
18 new releases in 2016 created sustained buzz around the brand.
In this era of nationalism, the company’s ‘Make in India’ initiative worked well for them, since the general public related the brand to the nation’s cause.
The communication strategy with an increased use of digital media and human tales saw consumers coming back to the brand.

They were an
Great customers care along with touching human stories.
organisation with a unique commitment to bounce back.
It brought the brand back from a near death experience.


In 1983, a brand unknown to the public called Maggi released in India with an advertisement with a mother feeding her children Maggi noodles with a jingle being played.
Years later, the brand went back to its roots of the same old ad and recreated it with a mom and her kids (now teenagers) finding the same joy.

Suresh Narayanan, Chairman & managing director, Nestle India stated that they had to revive a brand that was considered dead, so they decided to resurrect that memory with the same setting with a jingle.

The major controversy that Maggi faced was when in 2015 the FSSAI declared abnormal traces of lead in packets of the noodles.
This was just one of the casualties they faced at that time.
A lot of emotions circulated around the brand- fury, shock and nostalgia as it was pulled off the shelves of stores.
Reports indicate that Maggi had to destroy 550 tons of stocks across the country after a Supreme Court order.

As a result of this, the brand hit a new low and reached95th rank in 2015 among the most trusted brand rankings.
In an astonishing comeback, Maggi now stands at position 25 this year.
They were the most tested brand during that period and the biggest obstacles they had to overcome were their credibility & trust of their customers.

The relaunch of Maggi included traditional variants, a ‘no onion no garlic variant’ and Hotheads, a new sub-brand with new flavours.
To create sharp awareness for the relaunch, traditional advertising and digital modes of marketing were used to target the core user group-young children.

According to the chairman, advertising had played a key role in gaining back the once lost trust.
Maggi decided to use an offensive strategy which worked in their favor.
They leveraged their Nestle credentials to its fullest extent and more than they had ever used in the past.

Maggi showed that it is possible to revive the brand in spite of losing customer’s trust.
Lost credibility is the most difficult to regain.
Bringing Maggi back from the dead showed strong character of the company-Nestle

Yuvraj Singh

20/20 World Cup in 2007, 6 sixes in an over against England, Vice-Captain of Indian ODI team for 2007-2008.
A Youthful, good-looking and successful cricketer who is a true charmer.

He single handedly made India win a number of matches.
Yuvraj Singh was the darling of India.

During the time of the World Cup, Yuvraj used to wake up in the middle of the night, had difficulty breathing and used to cough immensely.
After the world cup, he took a scan which revealed a tumor in his chest but like any of us, he could not believe it.
And to top that he disregarded this warning because that meant leaving cricket

Therefore, he kept playing matches.
His life turned completely chaotic as he got diagnosed with a rare form of cancer.
He took months to beat the disease and after a rigorous treatment in US, he went back to the team.

Since then, he has had to make three comebacks in the Indian team.
While he kept on scoring runs in the T20 format, Yuvraj struggled to get going in the 50-over game, which led to a lot of criticism.
He shunned his critics who said that he’s not the same since his return and lost his mojo by working hard behind the scenes.

Yuvi shed a lot of weight and looked lean and mean.
Yuvraj Singh gave a wonderful gift to Indian cricket fans by slamming a magnificent hundred in the second ODI against England in Cuttack.
He roared back to form with a career-best 150 off 127 balls as India beat England by 15 runs to take an unassailable 2-0 series lead.
It was deja vu all over again as he partnered up with MS Dhoni to add a record 256 runs for the 4th wicket.

It wasn’t just about his hundred but the way he played in his innings which was heartening to watch.
The significance of the innings goes beyond the numbers as Yuvraj put together what was thought to be a mammoth task.
It was heart-warming and inspiring and thus the applause was emotional and he had received a standing ovation.

All comeback champions have something in common:

  1. They believe in their ability to win. They don’t just give up.
  2. Criticism does not bother them-they are pulled down by press, opinion leaders and nearly everybody.
  3. They put every bit of their energy to climb back-come hell or high water.

I am waiting for Nokia and Kodak to write a new story on comebacks

“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.”-Arnold Schwarzenegger.

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