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August 8, 2006

Will Microsoft’s Product Naming Missteps Impact Microsoft's Master Brand Equity?

MS logoMicrosoft has been voted the top UK brand, as the number one “Superbrand” in that country . The other in order of ranking were BBC, British Airways, Mercedes-Benz and Porsche.

It seems ironic to me that Microsoft grabs this award because the company stubs its toe so often when it comes to product naming. We have written before about consumer dissatisfaction with the ill-named IE7+ which caused an embarrassing this year. IE7+ was a because it created confusion.

Microsoft then named another product “Live Search”, sowing yet more outcry among users who found the word over-utilized in the . Turns out the confusion over the Live brand name was actually the result of two linked divisions not doing brand name research in tandem. As I reported last year, Microsoft has also been the target of numerous lawsuits and lots of ill will related to the “Vista”, “RSS” and “Java” names.

Product naming snafus notwithstanding, the BusinessWeek Top 100 Brands ranks Microsoft the behind Coke, with an equity of almost $57 billion.

However, I think that sooner or later the Microsoft product naming missteps will catch up with them and will impact the Microsoft Master Brand equity. Then again, with Microsoft’s massive spending, it may not. But, it doesn’t do Microsoft any good to stub their toe repeatedly.

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Posted by William Lozito at August 8, 2006 11:02 AM
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