Small Business Marketing Review – Trade Name Origins

Once in a while every small business owner needs to lighten up. Many of our articles focus on Creativity, and at times the reader may receive the impression that our view of that process a bit mechanistic. Well, here’s an idea to boost your creativity that doesn’t follow a procedure at all–go read a fun book.Trade Name Origins by Adrian Room is now two decades old, but it’s still a delightful reference book to pull down from the shelf from time-to-time. It’s the type of book one doesn’t read through straightaway; rather it’s best to flip through a dozen or so pages, glancing and gleaning whatever delights the eye and the mind.There are two levels to read the book on: one, of course, is when you are looking to actually create a Brand or a new name for a product line within an existing Brand. The second is just to read to loosen up the spring that drives the creative mind when that spring is wound a bit tight. Comments on both, below:If you are actively looking for a bit of a boost when creating that new name for a product or service, then please read pp. 15 and 16. Here Room covers six “chief criteria for a good, successful name” that will certainly guide you as dredge up and sort through and lop off your choices. We suggest you combine Room’s suggestions with pertinent ones found in The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding. If you sell globally, then pay special attention to Room’s suggestions regarding non-domestic cultures and the implications for your new brand name in a country other than your own.But, the second reason to read Trade Name Origins is just for fun and to re-charge the batteries in your inventive brain. Room is British, and the work is published in 1982, so quite a few of the trade-names may seem a bit distant to non-British readers in the early 21st century. Still, the seeds of the fertile imagination need to be re-planted in new topsoil from time to time to grow, and sometimes that new ground can best be found by digging a bit deep into the wealth of past writings rather than simply gliding across the internet in an easy but shallow search for a quick-fix of inspiration.Often it’s the stories behind the trade names that are the real treat. Of course, it’s fascinating to read the history behind a name one knows, such as Lego, but it’s also an unexpected treat to find the tale behind a more obscure brand such as Evo-stik.Check out Trade Name Origins sometime when your inspiration meter is heading toward the ‘e’ mark.© 2006 Marketing Hawks

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