This is something that a lot of companies forget. You see, branding is meant to appeal to people on a primeval level. Modern corporations use brands and logos the way feudal lords once used banners and shields. Once you’ve hooked someone into your “tribe”, you’ve got a loyal customer for life. However, these loyal customers demand something in return. By treating them like members of the tribe, you make them stakeholders in the brand identity. When you mess with that identity, you risk angering the members of your tribe.
One of the most recent examples of this is the Netflix/Qwikster rebranding. What makes this such a fiasco is that Netflix is deliberately creating a failing company. When they say that their old business model of mailing discs is dead, then spin that “dead” business off into a separate company with none of the Netflix branding, they are by extension insulting their customers. People who have known and loved the Netflix disc-mailing service for years now feel like fools for signing up with the service in the first place.
Next: The Perils of College Branding