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August 24, 2006

Branding: Trying To Be Cool

HPI recently read a great post on What's Your Brand Mantra about . Every naming company at one time or another wants to come up with cool brand names and it's very difficult to pinpoint what is cool at all.

Jennifer's Rice's words struck a chord: You Can't Copy Cool. wants to be cool like , but will not do it by trying to be like Apple.

You can't sound cool: On the other hand, don't think you can be cool by sounding like a cool brand. seems to have a less than cool networking site that calls users "hubsters" (sounds like hipsters, get it?).

Which iPod Are You?You cannot buy cool: I was surprised to read that , a very good brand name, tried to buy into the rap scene by paying rappers to rap about their Big Mac. How uncool!

Coolness is authentic. A cool name, linked to an authentic brand selling stuff that is authentically cool is... yes ...cool.

My own thought about coolness, to paraphrase a famous quote about a cool band called the :

You get cool by being the best at what you do... and being the only one who does it.

Robin Sharma goes so far as to say that even people are brands, so they might as well be cool brands.

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Posted by William Lozito at August 24, 2006 5:45 PM
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2 Comments

I agree with your comments. Another part of trying to become a cool brand is never using the word "cool" to describe yourself in the marketplace. That is very uncool. Your comments about people being brands is dead on. I blogged about how the "Tom Cruise" brand went from cool to uncool in a very short period of time.

Great thoughts here, William.

To expand the conversation a bit, one thing we often say to our clients is "Coolness moves on." Even Apple computers have suffered some down years... and who can forget that at one time it was not physically possible to be cooler than the King of Pop - Michael Jackson.

So... even if you're fortunate enough to be termed cool today, there's an excellent chance that unless you stay mobile and attentive you'll be tomorrow's tacky. See: Velvet Posters, Tickle Me Elmo, and whatever colors were "it" last year.

Businesses invest huge sums of money to make you believe that the stuff they have now is waaay cooler than the stuff they sold you yesterday.

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