QUDINI – queuing solution applications

Houdini-QUDINI

The ‘Houdini ‘ for resolving all your business queuing challenges, whether it is systematical or in person. This may be for example in the supermarket social distancing access ‘Green Light’ entrance and monitoring the queues (especially under Covid-19 restrictions in the UK).

Qudini software gurus have advanced their system even further. You no longer need to stand in line for the arduous length of time and brazen the climatic elements. Their mobile/cellphone ever-evolving options enable you to tap into the DIY store/supermarket programme in order to book your spot – the next in the queue. You are given a user-specific code for that shopping moment experience. They inform you of approximate time delay; notify you when it is your turn to leave your vehicle; pick up your shopping trolley/cart; show your identification code (as allocated by Qudini on your mobile) and you enter obligatory masked(!) to a happy, safe, uncrowded, shopping experience.

Houdini was not just an escape artist by magic. No! He carefully thought out each step to analyze the problem of entrapment and restriction. Every disentanglement was done in a pre-studied order, timing and method to emerge successfully free without causing harm to himself, other stage members or his awestruck audience of followers and non-believers.

Retail Choreography – a business-critical strategy

Yes! Qudini has nailed it as being the retail choreographer. They have formed awe-inspiring robust and compelling order to glide us in authoritative sequences across versatile and ever-changing stages. Thus we are able to embrace the changes we face in the ‘new- normal’ business world encountering diverse pandemic, cultural and environmental adjustments.

Name style, origin and tone

Thus, it is ever appropriate for the company to settle on a coined name of the two strong words Queue + Houdini= Qudini [ Cue/dee/nee]or [Kew/di/nee]. The tone and image of the name create the delusion of escaping from the problems surrounding a never-ending, exasperating queueing system. The play on words is puny and memorable.

In the UK we are brought up with the decorum of standing in a queue in an orderly fashion. In the USA you stand in line – same difference. Now in Spain, they have a whole different system of standing anywhere you choose and merely say: ¿Quién es el último? (Who is the last?). Yet the name is portable and easily enunciated by non-English speakers as [koo/di/ni.] In Mandarin Chinese they have the “qu“in 出去 chūqù, which interesting means to “go out.”

The letter q is of undetermined origin, stemming down from an Egyptian hieroglyphic sign appearing like a looped rope leading on to the shape of a twinned loop detected in ancient Semitic calligraphy.

The Romans had attained the early Greek habit usage of koppa for a k sound before u and adapted the sign to a more rounded shape with a curved tail. In this style, the letter Q evolved from Latin into English. Thus, many words in English have the prefix QU.

Many companies have utilized this prefix QU to create unique names and an assured market place over the course. To list but a few are Quaker oats, Quick Books, Quest Softech (India) Ltd., Quintegra Solutions Ltd, or even the Chinese like Qunar (去哪儿 / qù nǎ ér) and Quiksilver (极速骑板 / jí sù qí bǎn). Now, we add Qudini to the special Q-name list.

Quality of a Company’s brand

In order for a name to have that quintessential appeal in their trademark registration category it has to be quite special – it must be ‘heard above the herd’.

Qudini has achieved it!

Naming Alphabet Soup 101

(c) Rosie Reay and BrighterNaming

 

[Editor: Q is fascinating from a branding point of view as well because it is a sharp spoken character but is usually very round and soft visually.]

Posted in Branding, Consumer Goods, International Naming, Name Origins, Sustainable Brand Names, Technology Names

Astra Zeneca – Brand name background

A forthcoming vaccine out of Europe as a cure for Covid-19 seems to be winning the race to market. It is being made by Astra Zeneca. A giant step forward in the right direction by a giant pharmaceutical company.

Do you ever pause and wonder how linguistic, international naming consultants come up with such awe-inspiring and memorable names?

Naming a great product brand and company names are not achieved by merely throwing random names into the magician’s hat and saying, “white rabbits” and hoping the name hops across the polished boardroom table. Naming is a carefully crafted process with many years of in-depth knowledge and long hours of study and research into the etymology of word origin related to thoughts and ideas. These are usually requested by directives within the prospective Naming worksheet (hopefully supporting company documentation on product details/corporate images is forthcoming). However, with start-ups, they may/may not have the marketing knowledge.

Astra Zeneca about from a massive merger, of not only 2 great companies, but by design, they co-joined two historic names in the bio-medicinal industry. “AstraZeneca” is a made-up name, formulated by a Naming/Banding agency directed to discover a unique name, trademark free, which began with the first and last letter of our English alphabet letter. Furthermore, phonetics must ensure memorability in the customer’s minds, while morphology was to consist of no greater than three syllables and without being an insulting innuendo in any language.

Yet, how did they originally come up with Two names👉 Astra+ Zeneca👈?

Hmm?😷👀👂🌟💢 👆💡

Zeneca was successfully formed in June 1993 by the division of the pharmaceuticals and agrochemicals businesses of Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) into separate companies.

Origin of zen: Zen means https://www.yourdictionary.com/zen

It is from Japanese 禅 (zen ぜん).

In Buddhism: A philosophy of calm, reminiscent of that of the Buddhist denomination. Zen focuses on awareness through the practice of meditation to become extremely relaxed and collected.

“An approach to an activity, skill, or subject that emphasizes simplicity and intuition rather than conventional thinking or fixation on goals.”
Origin of astral

Astra has deep, poignant roots in the Greek Astron, meaning ‘a star’ = /ˈastr(ə)l/; pertaining to resembling the stars and the importance of astral navigation Also one of the five Greeks gods of the “Wandering Stars” Astra-Planeta = and Astraeus (god of the dusk); their spiritual beings; an existence linking to differing psychic and paranormal phenomena- of which the actual human body is considered a counterpart.

Conclusion

The Oxford counterpart for the Covid-19 seems to be racing against the clock to out-smart Astra Zeneca, as delivering the first vaccine against this awful pandemic virus. We don’t know for 100% surety which will have a more effective cure. Yet, what I do know, is that the name Astra Zeneca does stand out in the crowd and is not in lost in all the other generic names containing “Oxford”. Their name is co-joined. It is unique. It has longevity. And a great logo to match.

Astra Zeneca 3D logo
Designed by Interbrand in 1999

Naming Alphabet Soup 101

(c) Rosie Reay and Brighter Naming
Originally published in Ebrovoice.com 2020

Posted in Biotech Naming, Branding, International Naming, Name Changes, Sustainable Brand Names

Of Country and Crackers

California – July 30, 2020.chips and snack food naming

I don’t usually lead off with a dateline, but stay with me…

Around this time of year, I’m reminded of several things, one of which was a conversation I had with one of my young cousins. She has an excellent singing voice, and takes music quite seriously. During our discussion, I mentioned country-and-western…and got a not-altogether-unexpected response:

Young Cousin: “Country-and-western? That’s crap!”

Which teed me up perfectly to advance her education with two introductions. The first was to Sturgeon’s Law. If you’re not familiar with it:

Well-Meaning Friend: “Ted, how can you waste your God-given writing talent on science fiction? Ninety percent of it is crap!”

Writer Theodore Sturgeon (in a return-of-serve for the ages): “True…but then again, ninety percent of everything is crap.”

The second was to what may be, against very stiff competition, the saddest and most beautiful country song ever. Now, we all know that the genre of country music is unique for its capacity to explore tragedy and plumb the depths of the human condition (“Now I don’t mind that she ran off with Fred/But they stole my truck, my dawg still sleepin’ in the bed…”). But songwriters Matraca Berg and Gary Harrison took things to whole new level with their masterpiece, CMA 1997 Song of the Year, “Strawberry Wine”. (It’s been covered by a number of artists, but my favorite, linked above, is also the most popular version, by Deana Carter.)

And the particular lyrics that come back to me at this time of year:snack food brand consulting

“A few cards and letters and one long distance call
We drifted away like the leaves in the fall
But year after year I come back to this place
Just to remember the taste
Of strawberry wine and seventeen
The hot July moon saw everything…*”

* Not to be confused with the Flatt & Scruggs bluegrass classic, “Hot Mule-Eyed June”.

snack food namingAnd I can’t help but wonder if that last line inspired a really great consumer brand name: Late July.

What associations spring to mind from that name? Bar-b-cues, picnics, any sort of alfresco dining…and if you’ve ever been in the Midwest in late July, crops like wheat and corn coming to a perfect ripening…all In all, a lot of good connotations for a snack food company in the business of providing high quality crackers, chips, popcorn, and salsas. From one of their own packages: “Late July is the sweet spot of summer…”

I first tried them out in (of course) late July of 2019, when some friends put together a picnic, and I made a cheese spread…which we put on Late July’s answer to Ritz crackers. They also have several other cracker varieties, including saltines, and a head-to-head competitor of Cheez-Its. In late July 2020, our local health food store (the sort of venue where you may be more likely to find their products, which are non-GMO, vegan, kosher, etc., etc,) decided to have a sale on their corn chips, potato chips, and salsas.

Haven’t yet tried the corn chips, but the potato chips were outstanding. Picked up several jars of salsa, some for gifts, at least one saving for myself…to be enjoyed when I can find some (non-GMO) strawberry wine to wash it down with…

–Greg Marus

[And if you really want to know how corn is grown nowadays on big Midwest farms, you have to watch Laura Farms and her Vlogs on YouTube. 8000 Acres by one family and some big machines. Laura is a charming host and does all sorts of projects, including driving the mega big tractors, spreaders and harvesters – when they aren’t busy driving themselves! High tech ag-tech meets realities of earth, water, crops, etc. Very informative and their concern and care for the soil is very touching.

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Posted in Branding, Consumer Goods, Famous Quotes, Food Names, Name Origins, Retail, Trademarks

A Virus by any other name ….

As the world’s first major pandemic in over hundred years rages on, consumers and the press have adopted two popular shorthand names for it: Corona Virus or Covid Virus. Nowadays the two names are used interchangeably, but which one is the most popular?

Drug and vius naming servicesWell when these names first came into prominence, I realized right away that Corona was a more positive and hopeful name, and Covid was more of harsh and threatening name. This is the kind of thing professional namers study. In fact, if these two names were the finalists in a naming project I would ask the client about their brand values. Do you want to be more friendly and polite or do you want to be more serious and threatening? Then the decision between two good names suddenly becomes easy and management can agree and move on.

Similarly, today that the threat and hatred for the disease spreads and there is not as much hope for quick solutions and cures and more dread of catching it, the term Covid has become far more prevalent than the friendlier term Corona.

(C) 2020 Brighter Naming
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Posted in Biotech Naming, Consumer Goods, International Naming, Naming Education, Naming News, Rotten Names, Strange Names

What does a naming agency cost?

Years ago when I was researching naming agencies and what they charge, I went to that awesome fountain of knowledge, Wikipedia and looked up Naming Firms (as they call them). Immediately I saw it was dominated by the big guys and there was a whole paragraph or more on why naming projects started at $20,000 and went up from there.

creative naming helpWhen I tried to add a rebuttal to support smaller agencies and consultants, you won’t believe how quickly the Wikipedia “police” shot down my entries. So much for the democratic editing systems they embrace. Of course I should have realized the big guys can afford full time media monitors to keep their own message front and center. Today I see some others must have complained too because now there is no pricing mentioned at all. That whole section has been deleted. And, of course, the sample agencies listed are only the big, famous, expensive ones.

Yes, there are occasions inside big corporations when management needs lots of hand holding and reviews and data points because they only do analytical marketing by the numbers. So most of the naming work is actually executive meeting facilitation – often for a bunch of execs who haven’t a clue about modern naming – nor the courage to embrace a new name that is legally clear worldwide. And the agencies serving them probably only do four or five naming projects a year – unlike smaller dedicated firms where we do a couple or more a month.

product manager is responsible for namingSo who is responsible for naming in a small or medium sized business or division? The president or founder in startups, else the VP marketing or at least the product manager – since he juggles all functions no one else does. Or all of the above.  And what is their time worth?

We believe a naming project shouldn’t cost anymore than a product manager’s one month salary – and they sure shouldn’t be spending more than one man month focusing on it.  So what do product manager’s earn?

Glassdoor has recently released this data summary for USA:

Salaries for Related Job Titles

Director Product Management $149K
Product Management $109K
Associate Product Manager $96K
Program Manager $59K
Project Manager $66K

So even your Associate Product Manager is making $8K per month in salary alone. Which is why we believe few focused management teams need spend no more than that on a naming firm. And you will also save that in legal fees by having clean, available, trademarkable names for your new products and services.

The complete price list for an experienced naming agency.

Here is Brighter Naming’s price list for 2020:

Size of Business/Project Fixed Price, Guaranteed Results
Large International Corp Naming Project With worldwide provisional name clearance $7,200
Large Company – Domestic Clearance only $6,000
Medium size business – 100 to 900 employees $3,600
Small business $2,400
Startup partnership $1,800
Sole proprietorship startup $1,500

See also a related article on our website: Saving money with a naming agency

(C) 2020 and Brighter Naming
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Posted in Branding, Domain Names, International Naming, Naming News, Naming Resources, Trademarks

Great British brands of the 1800’s

candy namesCadbury

(Year Founded: 1824)

Cadbury was founded in 1824 when John Cadbury opened his grocer’s shop in Birmingham. Being a Quaker, he sold only tea, coffee, cocoa, and drinking chocolate.

Cadbury’s little shop grew in popularity so much that only seven years later in 1831, he was able to rent a warehouse in Crooked Lane, in the center of Birmingham. He began producing cocoa and chocolate there.

When the company’s former factory got too small in the 1870s, George Cadbury had a new vision of the future:

“Why should an industrial area be squalid and depressing?” he asked. “Why should not the industrial worker enjoy country air and occupations without being separated from his work? If the country is a good place to line-in, why not to work in?”.

The Cadbury business prospered at its new site at Bournville, and the company became famous for the advances in working conditions and social benefits for its workforce. 

Recreational facilities at Bournville were numerous, and the company also arranged worker outings to the country and education schemes. This innovativeness was more than a century before tech giants made having fun at work famous again.

Cadbury employed women workers going right back to the 1850s. It was somewhat unique in promoting women to forewomen – most firms did not appoint women to these positions before World War I.

When Cadbury moved from Bridge Street to Bournville in 1879, it employed 140 women out of a total of 230 workers.

The recipe to Cadbury’s ‘Dairy Milk‘ chocolate remains a top-secret under lock & key by the company. 

At the time of writing, Cadbury is one of the most popular chocolate brands in the world.

clothing namingClarks

(Year Founded: 1825)

Clarks had very humble beginnings.

James Clark made the first pair of Clarks in 1825 in the village of Street in Somerset, England. He used offcuts from his brother Cyrus’ tannery to create a sheepskin slipper.

Within a year, the brothers were selling 1,000 pairs a month.

At the time of writing, C & J Clark International Limited has over 1,000 stores around the world.

They also sell their products through third-party distributors. The Clark family owns 84% of Clarks.

Employees and other institutions hold the additional 16%.

clothing names and logosBoots

(Year Founded: 1849)

Boots was founded in 1849 by John Boot as a small family herbal medicine shop in Nottingham. No they don’t make or sell boots – for those see Clarks above!

John Boot died in 1860 and his son, Jesse Boot, then only aged 10, took over helping his mother run the family business. By 1883, the company got incorporated as Boot and Co. Ltd.

For ibuprofen, Boots Research Department was awarded the Queens Award for Technological Achievement in 1985. Stewart Adams, who was the main part of a team from Boots which developed the painkiller, received an OBE in 1987.

At the time of writing, Boots UK is one of the most significant health and beauty retailers in the United Kingdom, with over 2,485 stores across the UK. Apart from health and beauty products, Boots also provides optician and hearing care services.

When asked about the secret to their long-term success, the President & Managing Director of Boots UK, Seb James, said:

“For almost 170 years, Boots has been a loved and trusted staple of the British high street, remaining true to the ideals of its founder to provide affordable healthcare for the community. This philosophy and heritage are still integral to our business today, and our brand is shorthand for quality, trust, and accessible prices.”

“Pharmacy and Healthcare has always been at our core, and we continue to invest in improved technology to make our pharmacies simpler and enable our pharmacists to have even more time to focus on delivering great care. Digital healthcare will be critical to meeting future patient needs. Whether it’s trialing and introducing new services, like our Mole Scanning Service, that help us take control of our health, or developing new product brands that help make our customers feel good, such as recent launch YourGoodSkin, we are always looking for better ways to serve our customers.”

“As part of a global pharmacy-led, health and well being enterprise Walgreens Boots Alliance, our vertical integration grants us unique access to knowledge, expertise and additional growth opportunities. From our R&D to our distribution network and our huge store footprint, we have an in-depth understanding of customers and the ability to react quickly to changing needs. It all starts with customer insight from our Boots Advantage Card, one of the largest loyalty schemes in the UK, which helps us to see what our customers are buying, how well a new product is received and the potential for it to grow in the market. It also allows us to offer a leading range of own brands like No7, Soap & Glory, Botanics and Liz Earle that meet the needs of our wide customer base.”

“Boots UK’s recipe for long-term success and longevity is not really a secret… it’s a matter of staying true to our values and remaining relevant to our customers by responding to their changing needs.”

PS Notice how Cadbury’s and Boots have stylized script logos. This was fairly common at that time and all done by hand. It is just great to see how they have survived, even though it is very hard to create this style from scratch in a computer.

 

(C) 2020 Rosie Reay and Brighter Naming
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Posted in Branding, Consumer Goods, Food Names, International Naming, Name Origins, Retail, Trademarks

Trademarks can last a long, long time thanks to Mickey Mouse

length of trademarksWhen people ask me how long a registered trademark is good for, my glib reply is often “How old is Mickey Mouse?” Unlike patents, which typically expire after 17 years or so, trademarks can be renewed every few years. How many times?  Well each time the trademark on the name Mickey Mouse would have run out, Disney got the intellectual property laws changed so it could be renewed again and again – typically at 6 or 10 year intervals in USA.

Think about it.  What would the Disney franchise be worth without its original figure head Mickey? Not to mention another host of characters like Minnie and Goofy, etc. Remember, to renew any trademark, you have to prove ongoing usage of that mark in trade of some kind.  For Disney this is really easy as Mickey parades through Disney parks every evening.  Along with a hoCharacter namingst of comic books, games, toys, movies and all sorts of other paraphernalia.

But you still have to have your lawyers do their due diligence worldwide. Mickey Mouse is the first trademark I have seen in a long time registered in Iceland.  And not all countries allow so many renewals as the USA. So Disney waits till they expire (like in Brazil say) and promptly renews them manually.

As far as I can tell Mickey is now about 55 years old. Wow. He sure looks good for his age and still knows who his real family is thanks to trademark laws. Thanks Disney.

BIG NOTE: While registered trademarks are usually your surest way to protect a name or logo, it is not the only way. Do not assume that some name or brand can be infringed if they do not have the magic (R) by their name because they also have common law rights and these can be very powerful too. As our blog posts on great British brands show, trademarks can effectively live for ever if properly used and promoted.

 

(C) 2020 Brighter Naming
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Posted in Branding, Consumer Goods, International Naming, Naming Education, Naming News, Naming Resources, Retail, Sustainable Brand Names, Trademarks

Great old British Brands from the 1700’s that are still going strong

 Financial services namingCoutts

(Year Founded: 1692)

Coutts was founded in 1692 by John Campbell.

It started life as a goldsmith’s shop in Strand, London. By the time of Campbell’s death in 1712, it was an operational bank. After his death, his son-in-law took over the business.

However, after the death of Campbell’s son-in-law in 1747, Campbell’s son, George, took over control of the business once more.

At the time of writing, Coutts is a wealth manager for the very rich, famous and influential.

The British Royal Family is one of the most notable clients of Coutts. To give you an idea of how exclusive their clientele is, to become a client, people need to have at least £1 million in investable assets, not including real estate.

And this is just one of their many stringent requirements.

Consumer drink product namingTwinings

(Year Founded: 1706)

Thomas Twining opened Britain’s first tea room at 206 Strand in London in 1706, and Twinings was born.

Interestingly, the company still operates from the same premises to this day. In addition to being a legacy company, Twinings is also the longest-standing ratepayer in London as a consequence.

Another interesting fact about Twinings is that its logo, which got created in 1787, is the world’s oldest continuously used company logo.

Twinings is also famous for its ethical programs, through which it actively tries to improve the quality of life of tea-producing communities. It won the National CSR Award in 2017.

Twinnings is Britain’s oldest tea company.

Retail store namingFortnum & Mason

(Year Founded: 1707)

In 1707, tea was Britain’s favourite drink. It is at this time that Fortnum & Mason came into the scene offering Black Bohea tea.

This discovery cemented their hold on the market, almost instantly making them one of the nations leading tea retailers.

In the years that followed, they continually built their reputation, becoming famous for being quality food suppliers.

At the time of writing, Fortnum and Mason has kept most of its business strategy and remains an upmarket department store with its headquarters in Piccadilly, London.

consumer product naming high classWedgwood

(Year Founded: 1759)

The Wedgwood company was founded in 1759 by Josiah Wedgwood.

He was the youngest son of Thomas Wedgwood, a potter in Burslem, Staffordshire, England.

Josiah learned the trade in the family pottery works under his eldest brother, Thomas, before moving on to become an independent potter in 1759.

The Wedgewood brand caught on when King George III and his consort, Queen Charlotte, began supporting regional companies to boost Britain’s economy.

They even gave Wedgwood exclusive rights to use the word “Queensware” to promote his Chinaware. Or did you presume competition with China was something new? 🙂

During the 18th Century, Josiah Wedgwood was one of the most prominent public-figures supporting the end of slavery. He spearheaded the “Am I Not A Man And A Brother?” movement, which helped create mass awareness for the cause at the time.

Wedgwood’s activism even inspired Benjamin Franklin, who was a former slave-owner, to strengthen his support for abolition.

Josiah Wedgwood is also Charles Darwin’s grandfather. The wealth inherited from the Wedgwood dynasty provided Darwin with the foundation to come up with his notions such as the ‘Theory of Evolution’.

At the time of writing, Wedgwood is a leading fine-china and luxury accessories maker and distributor.

Wedgwood got acquired by a Finnish company called Fiskars Corporation in 2015.

[Ed: I was blown away as a youngster on my first business trip to London and so I brought my mother a small Wedgwood souvenir – but it really was more for me than her!]

With thanks and credits to Richtopia for first publishing on these subjects.

(C) 2020 Brighter Naming and Rosie Reay

Posted in Branding, Consumer Goods, International Naming, Name Origins, Naming Education, Retail

Brands that grew out of adversity

As the world goes through some tough times right now, it is interesting to see which major brands grew during depressions and wars. Surely there are some lesson to be learned here – not the least of which is press on and advertise so consumers don’t think you have gone out of business.

Volkswagen (“the people’s car”)

A direct result of the wars with Germany per Adolf’s Hitler’s exhortation to Ferdinand Porsche to build a car for the common people. He even was the guest of honor at the opening ceremony and was presented with one of the first cars off the line.

And in much more recent news, Volkswagen paid the biggest fines and had the biggest recalls in automotive history when it was discovered they had purposefully fudged the results of their smog measurements. And how has this affected their worldwide sales? In 2019  the VW group sold more cars than any other auto company in the world!

Sony (from sonnus for sound and sonny – my little boy)

As the co-founder Mr Morita has so eloquently stated in his autobiography, they had no choice but to start over with a whole new line of products from Tokyo Electron Company (Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo KK) as they were working from a factory with a bombed out roof after the war.

One of their products was the Sony portable transistor radio, just when everyone was going bigger and bigger with their hifi’s. The product line became more famous than the parent company so in due course that became the company name too.

Fanta (from “fantasie” – German for “imagination”)

During World War 2 the Germans were unable to get the magic coke syrup from the USA for their much loved Coca Cola so they converted the factory to make its own fruit flavored lemonade.

Their manager said to use their imagination – and they did, though reports say their initial drinks were pretty awful because of the lack of fresh fruit during war time Germany.

Today, however it endures as a major brand worldwide, especially in areas like India, Africa and Central America in addition to Germany and Eastern Europe.

(Personal note: My favorite is still Fanta Grape)

 

Proctor & Gamble (Surf, Tide, Febreze, Downey, Bounce, Ariel, etc)

Going into World War 2 P&G already had a broad portfolio of products but when they analyzed the potential of each it became clear to them that people would still always need soap. So this became the big emphasis of the company, to the point where they first created, then sponsored, a series of lunch time shows aimed at housewives. To this day, such shows are very popular and provide great advertising vehicles for consumer products. We know them as soap operas and Proctor and Gamble is the company behind more than half the top laundry detergent brands in the world.

 

(C) Brighter Naming

Posted in Branding, Consumer Goods, Drinks, International Naming, Name Origins, Naming News, Strange Names, Trademarks

Premade Packaged Pizza Names

How do these things start and progress? This post began by sharing a link to an article on the health benefits of canned seafood, which led to the observation that you can no longer order sardines on your pizza. The same is true of the once-ubiquitous anchovy topping and the best work-around for both would be a take-and-bake, using your own additional ingredients.

Pizza with sardines brought back a childhood memory, of growing up in a household where meatless Friday’s were the norm…often resulting in a sardine pizza from Appian Way.

(Discursion: the assumption that the proliferation of pizzerias and frozen pizza would have killed off this brand no later than the 1970s was incorrect. “Appian Way pizza” is Google’s second suggestion after just plain “Appian Way”. Apparently, it’s no longer available, but lasted well into this century; it shows up as sort of “zombie brand” on Amazon and similar; i.e., it at first appears that you can order it, but all the sites now show it as out of stock. For a nostalgic reminiscence about it, check out this piece from blogger The Robots Pajamas.)

From a naming perspective, something seems a bit off about the brand name “Appian Way”, and it’s the same objection for Little Caesar’sand Noble Roman’s: modern Italy descends from ancient Rome, but they are not the same, and one of the big differences: the ancient Romans were a millennium or so away from discovering the delights of a tomato-intensive cuisine.

Well, that got us going on names of pizza in general. Below are some thoughts on both the names and the products of frozen pizzas. (Names of pizzerias are a separate topic, as are the take-and-bake brands sold in supermarkets.For the latter, looks like most supermarkets usually have just one or two brands of take-and-bake, unlike the big selection of frozen varieties.) In the below, opinions about both the names and the products are strictly those of the author, and are entirely subjective; the list is in roughly descending order of price and (again, IMO) quality.

Di Giorno

The Name: Clearly Italian, easy to pronounce and remember. Somewhat generic; one online Italian-English dictionary translates it as “by day”, but another has it as “of morning”, a rather odd time for pizza.

The Product: IMO, the best of the frozen pizzas, and the only one that can really stand up in a blind tasting against delivery—as their ad campaigns clearly state.

Freschetta

The name: sounds a bit like something made up to sound Italian (cf. “Häagen-Dazs”), and one of the online dictionaries did not recognize it. The other, on the other hand, translated it as “fresh”, so I guess these folks got what they were trying for.

The Product: Good, but at around the same price as Di Giorno…

[Ed: Their Hawaiian Pizza is by far the best one on the market, and it is always so fresh]

 

Newman’s Own

The Name: not in the least Italian, but their pizza offering benefits from the association with a large assortment of high-quality food offerings. Curiously, many of these other than the pizzas are also Italian-inspired, such as their salad dressing. And they have what in my opinion is the best of all the glass-jar spaghetti sauces…though I’m NOT a fan of its twee name, “Sockarooni”.

Product: really good pizza, and a nice break from most of the others if you’re looking for a thin crust. However, that thin crust does make this an extremely expensive choice, based on the price per ounce.

Red Baron

The Name: If Newman’s Own poses the question “What says ‘Italian’ like a blue-eyed Jewish American movie star?”, then the folks at Red Baron answered with “How about a WWI German flying ace?”

The Product: I’ve enjoyed it more than once, despite their weird advertising campaign that over the years has pitched entirely to women. Pace Michael Jordan on sneakers and Republicans, men buy pizza too. (I’ve always thought of pizza as more or less gender neutral, but to the extent it skews at all, would be towards men. Classic cartoon: bewildered guy to visibly exasperated girlfriend: “But football, beer, and pizza are my innermost thoughts and feelings!” Maybe Red Baron just flipped this, and decided women buy pizza too, and were an underappreciated market segment.)

Sweet Earth

The Name: Like Newman’s Own, this is part of a broader line of foods, in this case vegan. Name seems like a good, easy-to-remember fit for the product line.

The Product: Only one in this list that I have yet to try, but with recent advances in plant-based food technology, actually looking forward to it rather than dreading it.

California Pizza Kitchen

The Name: Gives you a heads-up that they are going to ruin a basically good pizza by topping it with something that has no business being there.

The Product: This is a perfect example of the Latin proverb “De gustibus non estdisputandum”. Either you like the idea of taking something good (Thai chicken) and dumping it on something better (pizza) for an end result that is far worse than the sum of its parts; or you don’t. In the immortal words of S.J. Perelman: “De gustibusain’t what dey used to be.” Okay, to be fair, they DO have a number of far more traditional toppings, but that doesn’t seem to be how they got their rep.

[ED: Of course this is just a box version of the offerings from the very popular and great higher end sit down chain fondly called CPK out here in California.]

Culinary Circle

The Name: manages to sound simultaneously unique and generic. Like Newman’s Own, pizza is only one part of a wide range of food offerings.

The Product: I had thought of this as pretty much a head-to-head with Newman’s for the thin-crust market segment, as that’s the only variety that has made it into our local supermarket; however, the web site shows a larger variety of pizzas, as well as other foods. CC comes in a bit less expensive than Newman’s; however, given a choice, I’d push the boat out a bit and pay the small premium to get the latter.

[ED: This might be the house brand.  I see almost same packaging under Signature name at Safeway.]

Screamin’ Sicilian

The Name and The Product: The converse of “It ain’t bragging if you can do it” is also true: if you can’t do it, it IS bragging. If you’re going to try to sell pizza with a name like “Screamin’ Sicilian”, you’d better have weapons-grade peppers and sausage that pushes the boundaries of the Geneva Convention, not a product that’s duking it out in the mid-to-low range with Tombstone and Tony’s.

Tombstone

The Name: the ultimate one-trick (or one ad) pony. For our younger readers: the TV spot would show a prisoner heading for a firing squad, or some similar situation where life expectancy is measured in seconds.

Soldier in charge of firing squad: “What do you want on your tombstone?”

Doomed prisoner: “Mushrooms and pepperoni.”

The Product: Haven’t seen that ad in, what, decades? But apparently it created brand loyalty, as this now unadvertised pizza is still available, in what I would hesitate to call all its glory.

Fun fact: DiGiorno, Tombstone, and California Pizza Kitchen are owned by the same giant food conglomerate, Nestle.

Tony’s

The Name: What, someone had already trademarked Guido’s®? This couldn’t trade in Italian stereotypes more if the package had a cartoon chef, with a toque and black handlebar mustache, twirling a pizza…oh, wait…

The Product: If you have two people who are completely impoverished, this is an alternative to buying multiple Mr. P’s.

Celeste

The Name: European-sounding woman’s name, evokes both slight exoticism and home-cooking…but sounds more French than Italian to me.

The Product: Competes with Mr. P’s in that it offers only personal-size pizzas; slightly more expensive, slightly better quality than its competitor.

Mr. P’s

The Name: One presumes (and hopes) that the “P” stands for “pizza”.

The Product: The crust is definitely made of dough, and the sauce is recognizably tomato; I guess it makes sense that they’ve managed to pair mystery cheese with their mystery meat. (Okay, that’s a bit harsh—the French say “Hunger makes the best sauce”, and I’ve purchased Mr. P’s more than once…but when I was really broke.)

Disclaimer: No Pizzas Were Hurt In The Writing Of This Article

…although one was eaten. I brought home a plain cheese pizza from our local take-and-bake establishment, opened up the refrigerator for some stray vegetables that wanted to get in on the act, then chose my canned seafood topping…and, despite childhood nostalgia for sardines, indulged my adult preference for anchovies.

–Greg Marus

(C) Brighter Naming
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Posted in Branding, Consumer Goods, Food Names, Name Origins, Naming Education, Retail, Sustainable Brand Names

Naming Articles

New brand insider articles from an experienced marketing team. Learn all the basics of naming, branding and trademark registration from these free reports:

Mar 2019:The Power and Value of a Trademark

Jan 2019:4 common branding mistakes

Oct 2018: You named it What?

July 2018: Sample processes from leading consultants

June 2018: 10 steps to develop a process

August 2016: How to select a naming agency.

July 2016: How to get International Trademark protection.

March 2016: You received a cease and desist letter. Now what?

May 2015: How can one product line have many trademarks?

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