What’s in a Name?

Posted by Steve Kleber on Jul 19, 2007

Just as the brand name Starbucks resonates prosperity and the feeling of needing “celebrity cash” to purchase a simple cup of Joe, companies worldwide are carefully selecting company brand names and aligning themselves with other companies that equate their brands with their target audiences.

Moving away from the coffee world, wondering what brands are rocking the home channel? Last week, Donald Trump announced the launch of Trump Officeâ„¢, a collection of executive chairs designed exclusively for Staples by the Trump brand. Inspired by the lifestyle of Donald Trump, the new line of chairs offers affordable luxury and quality from the boardroom to the every day office. Capitalizing off of his hit show, “The Apprentice,” Trump has taken his realm to a whole new level – now you can take getting “fired” sitting down. If power and success could migrate through the leather of Trump’s office chairs – his money, prestige and not to mention his supermodel wife! – then who wouldn’t want a Trump executive chair for their office? And that’s exactly what Trump is selling. But it’s the way he’s marketing, and the company he’s aligning with – Staples – a brand known for quality and affordability, that makes this business move exceptional and foreseeably profitable.

Take a look at KB Homes’ Martha Stewart houses as another premier example of collaborating with another company to increase popularity, revenue and brand name. Despite the housing downturn and reporting an unusual quarterly loss a few weeks back, KB Homes’ buyers are still “buying Martha.” These branded homes are in such high demand that KB Homes, the seventh largest home builder by market value, can’t even keep up with requests. And what exactly is a Martha Stewart home? Home prices range broadly from $148,990 to $500,000, are modeled after Stewart’s current and former New York, Connecticut and Maine residences and include approximately 64 floor plans for buyers to choose from. 

KB Homes’ Martha Stewart homes represent uniqueness in the marketplace linking to two very successful brands. Homebuyers are confident in the Martha Stewart homes’ quality, style, resale value, and most importantly – brand name. And what does Stewart get in return? A haven of venues to showcase her bedding, colors, magazine and TV show…sounds like a marketing match made in heaven!

Sur La Table also recently collaborated with Ratatouille – one of the top grossing debuting films of 2007 ($47.2 million first week of its release) – to bring the screen to the table. Sur La Table offers Ratatouille dinnerware, flatware, aprons, pot holders, a children’s cookbook and even a “Remy the Rat Spat!”

So, I bet you’re thinking – how do I align with a successful name for my company, service or new product launch? And, how can I effectively reverberate my brand with my specified demographic?  Well, first you must look at your particular target audience. Ask some market research questions: what does my target market enjoy, how do they live, and what does my product/company offer to enhance their lives? In addition, you may want to thoroughly investigate other companies that you can collaborate with that will resonate with your target market. It’s never too early. Sur La Table didn’t think about creating a line of Ratatouille kitchenware until the success of the movie was publicized. And although KB Homes’ Martha Stewart line only accounts for less than five percent of its home building production, the potential growth of this section and exposure in the media alone, will pay dividends in the long run.

Your creative ingenious and intuition may not manifest a brilliant branding name or opportunity at the drop of a hat, but by identifying your target audience, embarking on some market research and collaborating with other companies and a marketing agency that can offer you an outside perspective, you’ll be sure to have your target marketing buying.
 
Feeling overwhelmed? Just begin by looking for creative and innovative ways to increase your profits. You may find yourself asking “What’s in a name?” Needless to say – everything! 
 

This entry was posted by Steve Kleber on Thursday, July 19th, 2007 at 1:35 pm and is filed under Advertising, Brand Management, Marketing. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.