Brands are pivoting everyday. We don’t always hear about it – that’s usually because the brands in question are smaller and not household names. In fact a lot of the brands today that are household names have pivoted on their journey to succeed.
Here are five examples of brands that have pivoted and their journeys:
Instagram started out as a location-based app called Burbn that allowed users to check-in at various locations, earn points and post pictures. However, it was too complex and not gaining much traction. So the founders decided to pivot the idea and focus solely on photo-sharing. They rebranded to Instagram and within a year had over a million users.
Wrigley is a well-known chewing gum brand, but it didn’t start out that way. William Wrigley Jr. started his career selling soap, and he would give a free pack of chewing gum with each purchase. The gum became so popular that Wrigley pivoted his business and began producing chewing gum instead. It proved to be a smart move, and Wrigley became a household name.
Nintendo started out as a playing card company in Japan. However, when the market became saturated, the company pivoted to toys and then to electronic games. Nintendo released the popular Game & Watch handheld game in 1980 and then the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) in 1985, which became a massive success and cemented Nintendo’s position in the gaming industry.
PayPal originally started out as a company called Confinity, which was focused on developing software for handheld devices. However, the founders soon realized that their peer-to-peer payment software was more successful, and they pivoted the business to become PayPal, a payment platform that allowed users to make online payments securely and quickly.
Starbucks originally started out as a store that sold coffee beans and coffee-making equipment. However, when the owners noticed that many customers were using their store as a place to sit and enjoy their coffee, they pivoted to focus on providing a high-quality coffeehouse experience. They rebranded and expanded their menu to include espresso-based drinks, pastries, and sandwiches. The pivot proved to be a success, and Starbucks became a global brand with over 30,000 stores worldwide.
In each of these examples, the companies recognized that their original business models weren’t working and were willing to pivot in a new direction to achieve success. They were able to adapt to changes in the market, consumer preferences, and technology to transform their businesses and create new opportunities for growth.