Friday, March 3, 2017

Brand Name Poetry

In 1955, a consultant to Ford Motor Company asked poet Marianne Moore to come up with a name for the company's new car.

He told the poet his list of 300 names was an "embarrassing pedestrianism," and that Ford needed a name to convey "some visceral feeling of elegance, fleetness, advanced features and design."

Moore supplied these names:

Accipiter, Aero Faire, Aerofee, Aeroterre, Andante con Moto, Anticipator, Arcenciel, Bullet Cloisoné, Bullet Lavolta, Comme Il Faire, Fée Aiglette, Fée Rapide, Ford Faberge, Hurricane, Impeccable, Intelligent Bullet, Intelligent Whale, Mongoose Civique, Pastelogram, Regna Racer, Resilient Bullet, Symmechromatic, Thunderblender, Thunder Crester, Utopian Turtletop, and Varsity Stroke.

In the end, Ford didn't choose any of Moore's names; nor any of the 18,000 supplied by its ad agency. The company launched instead with its original in-house name: Edsel.

With my partner David James, I recently went through a similar exercise to name our new agency. 

With help from a third writer, our list of names included:

Benchmark Marketing, Cranium Marketing, Criteria Marketing, Dive Team Marketing, Fearless Marketing, Fresh Face Marketing, Gutsy Marketing, Jungle Cat Marketing, Lean Mean Marketing, Lucky Dog Marketing, Marketing Engine, Marketing Maniacs, Noir Marketing, Outcome Marketing, Playbook Marketing, Rampant Marketing, Road Runner Marketing, Rugged Marketing, Runaway Marketing, Solutions Marketing, Stalwart Marketing, Touchstone Marketing, Trained Minds Marketing, Untamed Marketing, Venturesome Marketing, and Wildcat Marketing.

Like Ford, in the end we launched with the a "pedestrianism," Bob & David James.

Let's hope we have better success than Ford did with Edsel.
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