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Branding is not an exact science; there’s no foolproof formula to instantly generate a connection with customers. There are some tried and true methods that help increase the likelihood of success, but there’s always going to be some uncertainty. It’s one of the things that make this job so interesting. Sometimes a new logo resonates, often it’s an updated color palette, and other times it’s extending the brand into a new vertical. When done right, brand extensions seem natural, one of those “no-brainer, why didn’t I think of that” ideas. Unfortunately, as evidenced in this Adweek article, there were some head-scratchers in 2013.

Take heed, brand managers: extending your brand can be a great way to reach new audiences and reinvigorate performance. But it’s a fine line. Stretch too far and you could wind up with confused customers.