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January 23, 2007

Binney & Smith Changes Its Company Name To Crayola

Crayola_2006_logo.gifBinney & Smith Co., as subsidiary of Hallmark since 1984, is changing its company name to Crayola.

To leverage the brand name recognition of Crayola, its most famous product “just makes sense,” says Tom Asacker. The name, coined by company founder Edwin Binney’s wife Alice, comes from “craie,” the French word for chalk, and “ola,” or “oleaginous,” relating to oil.

The Crayola masterbrand has been used on a variety of products recently, extending its brand franchise to MP3 players, executive pens that look like big crayons, and even colored flavored bottled water (Crayola Color Coolerz).

Some people are actually making serious art with Crayolas. Obviously, the equity in the Crayola brand name is so strong that frankly you have to wonder why Binney & Smith Co. didn’t do this years ago.

I think a great deal of the Crayola brand equity was nurtured by the user experience and the relationship Crayola has with its users.

The color naming scheme of individual crayons, including “Inch Worm,” “Jazzberry Jam,” "Razzmatazz,” and “Tropical Rain Forest” added to this bonding with its consumers.

Plus, Crayola works hard not to offend anyone, over the years changing “Prussian Blue” to “Midnight Blue,” and “Flesh” to “ Peach,” and “Indian Red” to “Chestnut.” This offbeat product naming scheme helps when, for instance, they want cool water flavors like “Berry Blue,” “Wild Strawberry,” “Screamin' Green” and “Purple Pizzazz” - there is an instant, goofy connection with the parent brand.

Way to go, Binney & Smith. I mean, Crayola.

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Posted by William Lozito at January 23, 2007 8:20 AM
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