Seth Godin: Design like Apple, but name like P&G
I loved Seth Godin’s blog post on Design like Apple, but name like P&G, really simple, but absolutely critical:
Apple’s naming approach is inconsistent, it begs for lawsuits (offensive and defensive) and it shouldn’t be the model for your organization. iPhone is a phone, iPad is a pad, iPod is a … (and owning a letter of the alphabet is i-mpossible).
Procter and Gamble, on the other hand, has been doing it beautifully for a hundred years. Crisco, Tide, Pringles, Bounty, Duracell–these are fanciful names that turn the generic product (and the story we believe about it) into something distinct.
If you can invent an entire category, fabulous, that’s an achievement. For the rest of us, resist the temptation to be boring or to be too aggressive. It’s your name and you need to live with it.