the product naming blog

May 17, 2012

Australia Wangles a Naming and Branding Blooper

car.pngEvery so often I like to return to one of the biggest dangers in the world of naming and branding, and that's what happens when your brand becomes lost in translation.

It seems a company from down under called Wyngle found that their name really wasn't trusted all that much by Americans as it sounds too much like "wangle." So they are now named Wynbox.com.

The article, Five business rebrands that got lost in translation, mentions four other notorious failures, including Peugeot's ill-fated attempt to move into the Chinese market - the Chinese translation of Peugeot is "Biao zhi," which sounds like the Chinese slang term for "prostitute."

Other notable faux pas include Pepsi's slogan "Come alive with the Pepsi Generation" which in Taiwanese translates to "Pepsi will bring your ancestors back from the dead." And in China the KFC mantra "finger licking good" translates to "eat your fingers off."

But of course the world is littered with terrible names, and they just keep coming. Vauxhall's new car will be called "Adam," leading one source to wonder "Couldn't Vauxhall have done better?"

KFC.png

And don't forget about the Netflix, SyFy, iSnack 2.0 and AOL naming debacles.

Let's just hope companies learn from these brand naming faux pas.

We have compiled a list of brand naming faux pas you may find helpful.

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May 9, 2012

Palm Springs Has Changed Its Name to an Oasis

The greater Palm Springs area, a desert valley that has seen an increase in tourism, is rebranding itself to The Greater Palm Springs Oasis.

palmspringsoasis.pngAdditionally, the new slogan is "Greater Palm Springs Oasis: A Brand New Day."

Another part of the destination rebranding initiative is the commercial which offers a collection of experiences from golf to music and film festivals.

The new logo is an "oasis infinity" featuring nine loops that symbolize the valley's nine cities and nine "brand pillars."

The nine brand pillars are:

Sanctuary: Spacious places of escape, from historic to quaint to modern and resort.
Seductive: Enticing the senses and passions.
Sensory: Not just a place, but a collection of experiences that engage all the senses.
Serene: An oasis of calm and quality relaxation.
Spectrum: Alive with color, light, discovery, from sunrise to sunset.
Spirit: Enriching, nourishing, rewarding and connects.
Sport: A mecca for outdoor adventure and activity.
Style: Timeless, chic, unique lifestyle, architecture, art, fashion and music.
Sunny: The 360 days of clear blue skies changes your outlook and warms your heart.

The metaphor of an oasis, a peaceful relaxed area, in the desert should draw more attention and visitors to Palm Springs with its new name, The Greater Palm Springs Oasis.

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April 24, 2012

E.F. Hutton Rebirth Brings Back Classic 80s Naming and Branding

efhutton_logo.pngI find it interesting that the E.F. Hutton brand name is making a comeback.

It is one of those iconic brands that we all missed when it disappeared in 1987 after being acquired by Shearson Lehman Brothers.

Remember the tagline "When E.F. Hutton talks, people listen?" It was even parodied in the 1983 movie Trading Places.

Now, former Hutton executives including Stanley Hutton, grandson of the founder Edward Hutton, want to bring the brand name back. The resurrection of the company, much like that of PeoplExpress Airlines, represents sound business sense from a simpler era - never mind that both brand names are tainted by failure.

Frank Campanale, former executive and new CEO of E.F. Hutton stated, "We're trying to create a great firm with great culture, something E.F. Hutton had. We have a clean slate."

EFHutton.png

He went on to say that "It's a fantastic brand and it still has a wonderful legacy, not only with the advisers who loved working there but with the clientele as well."

Campanale had been chasing the name for years, until he ultimately secured it from Retriever Brands a year ago. The name itself has been out there for a surprisingly long time before being revived.

Robert Rittereiser, who was named president of Hutton in 1985, believes the name has a certain cache that should stretch across the decades.

I do think that some of these names still stand for a culture that people miss. Will E.F. Hutton seem too retro for today's investor? Probably not.

Nowadays, most well known financial brands are so tarnished that you really need to go back into history to find one that attracted consumers. I'm glad to see the E.F. Hutton name is with us again.

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March 23, 2012

Tagline Contest for a New iPad 3

apple-ipad-3-hd-new-photo.jpegThis is not a scam.

We have already shared a growing list of more than 2000 major brand and company taglines and slogans.

We are looking for entries that aren't already on our list.

Everybody loves a clever tagline or slogan. From repetition ("It keeps going and going and going" - Energizer) to juxtaposition ("Some of the Best Men are Women" - U.S. Army) to double entendre ("Nothing Runs Like a Deere" - John Deere), the best taglines and slogans are not only memorable, they become part of "the fabric of our lives."

The judging is simple.

Submit the greatest number of taglines or slogans for major brands and companies that are not already on our list at: http://www.namedevelopment.com/list-of-taglines.html

For the official contest rules, click here.

Go for it!

Pass this contest on:

Finally, this is not a scam.

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March 19, 2012

Win a New iPad 3 by Entering Strategic Name Development's Tagline and Slogan Contest

iPad3Image.pngEverybody loves a clever tagline or slogan. From repetition ("It keeps going and going and going" - Energizer) to juxtaposition ("Some of the Best Men are Women" - U.S. Army) to double entendre ("Nothing Runs Like a Deere" - John Deere), the best taglines and slogans are not only memorable, they become part of "the fabric of our lives."

And just as great artists and musicians learn how to create modern masterpieces by studying what has gone before them, so do the writers of today's taglines build on the ideas that have helped to market great brands and companies.

We already provide a growing list of more than 2000 major brand and company taglines.

This contest is designed to make this free database an even more robust resource for marketers and advertisers alike.

To qualify, entrants must submit their list of major brand or company taglines and slogans to submittaglines@gmail.com, no later than April 15, 2012. Entrant must also be 18 years or older and legal resident of the United States at the time of submission.

Judging will be based on the person who submits the greatest number of taglines and slogans for major brands and companies that do not already exist on this list: http://www.namedevelopment.com/list-of-taglines.html

We are excited to see who rises to the challenge of this contest - both for the love of taglines and for the opportunity to Think Different and win the world's most coveted technology products -
the new iPad 3.

For the official contest rules, click here.

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