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September 5, 2007

Failed Foleo Product Name is Ugly, Oily Damaged Goods

foleo.gif Palm's recent cancellation of its Foleo mini-notebook is yet another dead end in the twisting and winding route of brand naming that the company has embraced.

One of the reasons the Foleo failed was that the gadget blogs hated it, of course.

But the name has also been an albatross. Foleo is a play on the word Folio and is designed to help the gadget fit into the Treo brand naming nomenclature.

Back in June, The Inquirer ran a great article by Fernando Cassia entitled "How to Make Palm's Foleo a Winner, In Ten Easy Steps."

Step one was to change the name, which has been lampooned as Folio Folly. Spanish speaking people may, just may, be turned off by a word that looks like a combination of feo (ugly) and oleo (oil). Plus, it's difficult to think of any successful gadget that starts with an F.

The blogosphere seems to like Palm Book or Palm Agenda but Palm is stubbornly going ahead and calling the next generation the Foleo II, despite the fact that we never had a chance to buy the original Foleo.

Why, oh why, do companies stick to a product naming scheme that has been cursed by failure and disappointment?

As tech guru Monte Carlo Corpuz says, "the name's damaged goods." I agree.

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Posted by William Lozito at September 5, 2007 7:55 AM
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"Why, oh why, do companies stick to a product naming scheme that has been cursed by failure and disappointment?"

Great question!

I wonder if it is a combination of pride and lack of empathy.

Pride in the sense THEY will be the one's to make this naming scheme work when others haven't.

Lack of empathy for the consumer who has to identify, pronounce and live with the product's name.

Great post...keep creating,

I agree. Pride can make even the most forward thinking company stubborn.

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