Tuesday, March 31, 2009

How To Create A Brand Name

Forget who you're targeting. Say what you do. That appeals to the broadest audience with a call-to-action AND a reason-for-being. Vaseline INTENSIVE CARE Lotion, COLD-FILTERED Miller Genuine Draft, BAKED Lays. Well. You get the point. Drop the letters, V, S, A, Z and any other letters that slither off your tongue. They make your name sound soft like a shemale. "What do you drive?" "I drive a Venza." Sounds like you have an STD. "What do you drive." "I drive a Versa." Brand names with soft letters (V & A) just don't sound like they work or would last a long time. Use lots of strong letters like R, M, L, F, G, D, C, N, etc. Folgers sounds like coffee that will wake you up. It's also the #1 brand of ground roast coffee. MGD; Miller Genuine Draft is the most successful brand launched by Miller Brewing in the last 25 years. Chanel just sounds like it will make you sexy.


Anonymous said...

is this a serious piece of advice or a joke (it wasn't written on April 1st, so I'm guessing it's meant to be real).

What about Apple? Sony? Zappos? VW? I'm sure all of these brands are shemale, don't work or will last long time.

I think I just realized I've been reading the wrong blog:-(

H. Martin Calle said...

Thanks! At least I know I have one reader. But I ask you to prune your thinking to promote new growth whoever you work for.

I provide scenarios that build #1 brands or that transform numbers 2,3,4,5 or 6 into a number one brand.

In terms of actual sales volume Apple is a way distant second to PCs inspite of superior product and customer service. I'd be looking at how to create a hypothetically stronger Apple, including a different name that says what the product is and what it does to a much larger audience so that Apple can topple PCs - something they;ve been unable to do for decades. They are Pepsi to Coca-Cola. A lot of people think they're close competitors too, but Coke unit and dollar volume dwarf Pepsi.

Sony lost its allure long ago. Last memorable product that made the company more valuable was Walkman. Lots of strong letters W, L, K, M, N that said what the product is and what it does. Sony's most recent stuff (Wega) is very shemale and a distant commodity rival in a heavily price driven commodity category.

ZAppos and VW though well regarded by users and non-users remain distant also-rans in their industries.

So continue to think critically for yourself, don't let your mind get watered down and don't believe all the hype generated by spin merchants. Just because you think well of something doesn't mean it's the number one brand. I don't do number twos on anyone unless they deserve it and the companies you mention have been basking in their own glories without ever making serious attempts at becomming #1. They are content with 2nd place...and ultimately no one remembers who finished second.

You're not reading the wrong blog but hope you continue to play the game.

Andra H said...

so, how do you make a brand... technically? i mean the steps that turn the name you have for the product into a brand?

Peterbilt said...

If you're trying to say Apple's sales relative to PCs has anything to do with branding, you're business illiterate.

Explanatory adjectives may be good to attach to a product in a product line, but an explanatory company name is a flat-out bad idea. It is boring and obvious, and recommended against by pretty much every other brand-building professional.

Also your response to the prior poster was condescending. I'm not impressed.

H. Martin Calle said...

Just tellin' ya what works after about 60 years of doin' this. You can go your own way and I'll go mine. At the end of the day we'll see who has more successful brand names. The easy way out is to disagree with me, as do just about most people. Then again. They have not created as many successful brand names as I have. The difference is, when looking for that name, they gave up and settled for something less. I did not. Also, this blog is for me. Not you, or other readers. So I couldn't give a rat's ass if you're impressed or not while you work your way through life getting your first xareer's worth of experience.

Debra Zimmer said...

Actually, what you call "strong" letters are actually "hard Consonants". I read an article years ago about the linguist who named Starbucks who said that words with two syllables both ending in hard consonants had the greatest memory recall (thus the brand Starbucks). I've been finding this to be true and it looks like you have also been finding that hard consonants sit well with the customer.

First time I've seen something that confirmed the article I read over 10 years ago. thanks!