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General Motors Company (GM), Starbucks Corporation (SBUX), The Coca-Cola Company (KO): Firms Look to the Past to Boost Revenue

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Innovation and progress often translates to “new and improved.” Companies use new products and services to set themselves apart from the competition. Sometimes, however, companies find that “new and improved” is not the only path to increased revenue. Instead, firms look to past ideas for inspiration.

Chevy resuscitates its “heartbeat”

Chevrolet makes up a large portion of General Motors Company (NYSE:GM)’  total global sales. GM relies heavily on Chevy to remain profitable. Yet, Chevy’s market share has decreased to 12.8%, which is both a historic low and an almost 2% drop from six years ago.

General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) knows it must reinvigorate Chevy to increase market share. But, how does it plan on doing that? Perhaps it needs to re-establish Chevy as the “Heartbeat of America.”

General Motors Company (NYSE:GM)Alan Batey, Chevy’s brand chief, explained, “When you go back in time and look at when we were at our best it was when Chevrolet had products that moved people’s minds and connected them on an emotional basis.” Batey’s comment is no exaggeration. The “Heartbeat of America” campaign ran from 1987-1994. As you can see below, market share began dropping as the campaign lost steam after 1990.

Even though the brand lost market share over recent years, Chevy still has a global presence and brand strength. Therefore, resurrecting Chevy’s image promises to reinvigorate sales. As Chevy regains its past strength, General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) will likely see additional revenue and better brand image.

Forget plastic and aluminum, give us glass

Replaced by aluminum and plastic, glass soda bottles are a thing of the past. Or are they? Glass bottles are making a comeback.

The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE:KO) now produces many of its products in glass bottles. Granted, glass bottles only make up 2% of total soda sales. But, they serve a few important purposes. The packaging appeals to a variety of demographic groups including baby boomers, Hispanics, and millennials.

The novelty of the bottles and the appeal to different demographic groups allows Coke to sell the soda at a premium. A six pack of 8 ounce Coke in glass can cost you $7.50. This compares poorly to the $8 or $9 you may pay for a 12 pack of plastic Coke bottles. Moreover, glass bottle sales rose 4.5% last year, while plastic bottle sales were up 2.5%, and can sales increased by 1.4%.

Coke’s strategy will not only continue to increase profits but will also strengthen and reinforce its brand. The brand is tied closely to its original glass bottle’s shape. Coke only stands to gain by selling its traditional glass bottles.

The next old fashion soda fountain

Since 2011, Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) moved beyond coffee and expanded its business. That year, it removed “Starbucks Coffee” from its logo and bought the juice maker Evolution Fresh. In 2012, the firm purchased San Francisco Bay Bread and the tea maker Teavana. These acquisitions allowed Starbucks to diversify its product base.

Today, Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) cafés offer meals and grocery stores offer beverages in prepackaged containers. Also, the company is looking to an “old fashion” methodology for expanding its offering even further by creating soda fountain drinks.

Though the company is still testing the beverages in Atlanta and Austin, the drinks promise to provide additional revenue streams. Since Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) started to offer more than just coffee in 2011, revenue has continued to increase.

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