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Steve Rivkin
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Big Ass Fans is a new national advertiser. They sell the world’s most efficient ceiling fans, in diameters from 5 to 24 feet. The company started life as the High Volume Low Speed Fan Company, before adopting an irreverent new... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2012 at Branding Strategy Insider
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“Hickory, dickory, dock, the mouse ran up the clock.” That might have been the first nursery rhyme you learned. There are powerful reasons why rhymes permeate early learning – and later in life, too, when the rhymes in popular songs... Continue reading
Posted Aug 10, 2012 at Branding Strategy Insider
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Ovaltine is reintroduced with new advertising but the same old orange jar. Sales of the century-old, malt-extract, milk flavoring powder doubled in the first 100 days. Coca-Cola brings back the 40-year-old Fresca brand of citrus soft drinks with a graphics... Continue reading
Posted May 3, 2012 at Branding Strategy Insider
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1. Do go for quantity. Nine of any ten names generated (by any method or means) fail to get through an availability screening. And this is not a new problem. When the Coca-Cola Company introduced its first diet drink way... Continue reading
Posted Apr 26, 2012 at Branding Strategy Insider
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Ever wondered where the brand names Twitter and Yahoo came from? If you’re thinking there’s going to be a scientific or high-tech explanation, think again. Interviewed by Maureen Dowd in The New York Times, the co-inventor of Twitter, Isaac ("Biz")... Continue reading
Posted Mar 12, 2012 at Branding Strategy Insider
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So the Charleston RiverDogs are offering naming rights to their new baseball stadium. Should you bite? Here are seven questions to ask about any deal with a professional sports team. 1. What’s the connective tissue? Sporting events and teams certainly... Continue reading
Posted Jan 17, 2012 at Branding Strategy Insider
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One of the many sidebars to media coverage of the death of Steve Jobs in October 2011 was an old question: Where did the name Apple Computer come from? Lots of speculation has floated by: Jobs & Wozniak wanted their... Continue reading
Posted Nov 17, 2011 at Branding Strategy Insider
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In the grand old comedy “The Sunshine Boys,” two aging vaudevillians are discussing comedy itself. One informs the other that words with K and P sounds are funny. Therefore, words such as chicken, pickle and porcupine are funny. But other... Continue reading
Posted Sep 2, 2011 at Branding Strategy Insider
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“Google it.” “Did you Xerox the report?” “Please FedEx it.” Once upon a time, using a brand name as a verb was verboten. It was behavior that would drive a trademark lawyer crazy. But more and more marketers are deciding... Continue reading
Posted Jun 20, 2011 at Branding Strategy Insider
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In Buy Me!, his latest book, consumer behavior expert Marshall Cohen talks about how to retool your products and your marketing to one-up your competitors. Or as the book’s subtitle suggests, “new ways to get customers to choose your product... Continue reading
Posted May 20, 2011 at Branding Strategy Insider
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Would “outlandish” work in your category? Consider the rough-and-tumble moving industry, where independent carriers are proud of their reputation as tough guys who tackle any challenge. Some of their names push the envelope: Hernia Movers in Wisconsin. (Tagline: “The potentate... Continue reading
Posted Mar 17, 2011 at Branding Strategy Insider
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It’s a boom time for domain names as more people and more marketers flock to the Internet. Domain names have grown 7% in one year, with more than 41,000 new ones added each day, on average, last quarter. Online ad... Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2010 at Branding Strategy Insider
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Ahh, the perils and pitfalls of international branding. Last year it was Russian energy giant Gazprom igniting a global firestorm of criticism when it announced a new joint venture in Nigeria. What went wrong, naming-wise? Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and... Continue reading
Posted Dec 7, 2010 at Branding Strategy Insider
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In the naming playground, technology and pharmaceutical firms are among the busiest performers. So we asked Mark Steiner, a nationally recognized intellectual property attorney, for his take on the good, the bad and the ugly in those fields. Steiner heads... Continue reading
Posted Oct 30, 2010 at Branding Strategy Insider
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Think of it as “Extreme Makeover, Aquatic Edition.” Asian carp, scorned as inedible and hunted down as vanquishers of native species, are being taste-tested under new names on menus from south to north. The background: Asian carp were imported to... Continue reading
Posted Sep 24, 2010 at Branding Strategy Insider
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The Tea Party Bookshop in Salem, Oregon, has a generous selection of titles on personal growth and spirituality. There’s a poetry reading on the third Thursday of every month. And every once in a while, there’s a “pagan meet-up,” when... Continue reading
Posted Aug 29, 2010 at Branding Strategy Insider
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Should you start your new name with an S or a C? Why not a J or a K? In other words, does the first letter of your product, service or company name really matter? – aside from the gambit... Continue reading
Posted May 18, 2010 at Branding Strategy Insider
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Choosing a new trademark is a thorny task for many companies. So we asked Tara Benson, Esq., a seasoned intellectual property attorney, for her thoughts on how to avoid the most common pitfalls. Benson is a senior member of the... Continue reading
Posted Feb 10, 2010 at Branding Strategy Insider
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“Naming a company Google or Squidoo or Blueturnip in the dot-com world isn’t weird. It’s the equivalent of naming your kid Michael.” That funny (and perceptive) quote comes from Small Is the New Big, a (2006) book from author and... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2009 at Branding Strategy Insider
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It’s the Cadillac of crossovers,” said the ads from Cadillac as it introduced its SRX vehicle for 2010. No longer is Cadillac merely a century-old brand name. Over time, it’s also become a rhetorical device. Consider these other “Cadillacs”: “The... Continue reading
Posted Dec 18, 2009 at Branding Strategy Insider
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Business is off 40%. You lost $9 million last year, compared with a $7 million profit the year before. Average age of your customers is up to 73, from 68 a decade ago. It was definitely time for a makeover... Continue reading
Posted Dec 16, 2009 at Branding Strategy Insider