The story of iSnack 2.0, aka Vegemite, is so interesting (and it is so hard to type iSnack 2.0 without laughing). I'm not even sure how I feel about it or what the most important lesson of the story is. Pop over and read Idsng's article about it.
Are you back? Ok.
From the perspective of a creative professional there are so many things wrong with this story and it's obvious that the public wasn't immune to the ridiculousness of it, but what really bothers me is the underlining assumption that everything must be continually improved. It's troublesome that a product that was clearly doing fine and has the affection of a nation could be vulnerable to this ugly side of business.
Constant unquestioned unending growth, optimization, updating to try and sell more has never set well with me. We've seen what can happen when the economy became addicted to growth. I think that same crash'n burn can happen to a brand when it looses sight of the intention and limitations of a product.
Why can't companies just leave things alone. The product is special, it brings in a good profit, it strengthens your other brands by bringing stability and trust, people identify and consider it part of their life. What else could you ask for? To sell more? I guess so..... but my approach would be to enrich what is already there. To dig deeper into what people feel and what they need and see what ideas come out of that.
I'm working on talk about Strategy as it applies to the creative industries, digital focused of course, this story is strengthening my resolve to get it done and out there.
ps I don't think you are a bad guy/gal Kraft. Just a little misdirected. I would love to work with you sometime.