Some companies can’t help but self-implode. As they eye ever-increasing profits, they abandon the things customers love, becoming ugly shells of their previous glory no one likes.
Here are stunning examples of companies that abandoned their target audiences in the quest for more money but ended up paying dearly.
People loved Animal Planet for the animals. The network tried to follow in TLC’s footsteps by featuring more human-focused junk content and lost most of its core audience.
All The Science Channels
Animal Plant wasn’t the only science channel that morphed into junk television. The History Channel and Discover also decided to cater to the lowest common denominator. These channels used to feature remarkable shows about engineering, technology, historical battles, and more, but now they’re all junk about fake UFOs and survival-esque reality TV.
Cracked used to be the go-to web resource for hilarious satire. Once the funniest place on the web, Cracked abandoned the fun humor in favor of clickbait listicles for juicy ad revenue.
Not that there’s anything wrong with clickbait listicles (we add nervously). They can be educational and entertaining if done correctly.
The World Wide Web bursts with content, and StumbleUpon helped users “stumble upon” the internet’s glorious and random secret world. People would browse the sight for hours, enjoying the assortment of content available.
No one knows how to use the new version “Mix.”
Etsy was the best way to find homemade, one-of-a-kind products designed by regular people. Of course, big businesses couldn’t stand to see ordinary folks make a buck, so the platform was inundated with cheaply made mass-produced goods.
You can still find hand-crafted items, but it’s harder and harder for customers to know what they’re getting.
The haven for tech Geeks morphed into just another phone store. Customers relied on Radioshack for the array of niche electronics and the knowledgeable staff. Now, you may as well go to Best Buy.
JCPenney had the perfect core audience: middle-aged women. Unfortunately, middle-aged women aren’t hip and trendy, so JCPenney tried to rebrand for a younger crowd. They did away with coupons, losing their middle-aged customers, but couldn’t shake the stigma and attract younger customers.
Halo made the Xbox system competitive, but Microsoft kept trying to expand the game for a “broader” audience, destroying everything early players loved about it. The first-person shooter used to be neck and neck with Call of Duty, but now no one cares about Halo.
Applebees tried to attract younger customers by becoming a club at night. Unfortunately, young people don’t want to hang out at Applebees, and the older customer base doesn’t want to hang out at a “club.”
The Applebees Club didn’t last long.
The early days of eBay were glorious. It was like an online garage sale where people could buy and sell cool junk from their garages.
Now, the platform is inundated with stores and cheap merchandise from overseas. The fees make it impossible for small sellers to make profits selling their old junk, so the cool stuff no longer finds its way on the platform.
The Music Television Network morphed into a reality television network. No one who watched MTV to see the latest music videos still watches.
The symbol of American pride is now a symbol of American greed. Boeing focused on excellent engineering, but now they care more about profits than great designs.
Blizzard was the name in PC gaming. Unfortunately, as they eyed console and mobile markets, they lost sight of the excellent PC features everyone loved about their games.
Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones didn’t abandon its core audience – it was a worldwide phenomenon loved by nearly everyone that destroyed itself so epically that no one even talks about it anymore.
Talk about a massive failure.
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Here’s the evidence that makes us wonder if America is actually a dystopia.
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