Thursday, May 21, 2009

Brand Name: How to name a product

For an initiative that we have undertaken at Congruent, my colleague and I met up with Mr. KR Chandrasekaran (Chandra), COO, Java Green, last weekend. We are building an IT product and sought Chandra's advice on how we should name the product.

After hearing our story and checking out the details, Chandra suggested a framework to work on. Chnadra opined that the brand name should ideally provide cues to what the product is likely to do for customers. This would help in easy association in the minds of customers, esp for brands that may not have a large advtg budget. He gave the example of Fair & Lovely and (at another level) Surf detergent. Surf surfs well (foams well). Of course, there are successful brands with names (like Nike or Accenture) that may have no direct meaning that consumers can associate with but they usually require significant time, effort & money to build.

He suggests that a brand name should preferably have 3 elements to it:

1. Name
2. A Category Descriptor
3. Benefit or tag line

He advised us to use Aaker's model, which provides an useful and practical approach to developing a brand's identity and helps to look at a brand in its entirety. He also strong suggested us to read Building Strong Brands by Mr. David A Aaker. I have added to the same to my wishlist.


MOHIT said...

hey i liked the way you have described your profile......yes i liked the post too....


RaAn said...

Hi Ganesh,
I'd recommend Al Ries and Jack Trout's book on positioning (22 immutable laws...).

Whatever product you create today - we are living in an over-communicated world, which warrants marketers to position products intelligently.

Would also like to know if a software product can follow the same strategy as a mass market product?

Manoj said...

Hi ganesh

Your thought holds good but very basic. You need to tell what the product is about????

Secondly, i don't no if a FMCG criteria for brands will suit an IT product unless it cuts across the entire spectrum of users/ corporates.

The books recommended are good but implementation with the right communication tools and backing it up with good sales techniques is the key to success of any brand. Without this everything is theory!!!

At an IT level i guess its more the functionality of the product and hence it may definitely hold good.


Cheers and have fun!

Sriganesh R said...

Hi Manoj,

Thanks for the feedback. It is just a gist of a conversation that we had. But I think there is learning for FMCG brands, too.

Of course, I haven't read the book nor done extensive research. I wouldn't claim I am a champion on this topic.