In the most recent edition of Inc. magazine, which arrived in my mailbox this week, I noticed a review of new video projectors (the on-line article is here). Now I like technology and gadgets, but I simply do not understand what thought process – if any – goes into the naming of many of these products. In this case, all six of the models reviewed had clearly passed through the Alfred E. Neuman brand-naming process:
- Sony VPL-FX40
- Panasonic PT-DW10000U
- NEC NP60
- Sharp XR-30X
- Toshiba TDP-FF1AU
- Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 1080
Names only a product engineer could love, or come up with.
If I’m going to purchase a projector, I want to have a brand name that I can: 1) figure out, 2) pronounce, 3) remember, and 4) tell others about with pride. Every one of these flunks badly. And this Alfred Engineer Neuman naming process runs through a lot of other technology companies as well (think: camera models, phones, etc.)
Why can’t these companies name a projector something like TruVizion? And when you introduce a new model, make it the TruVizion E? Do I really want to be counting zeros when writing the Panasonic model’s “name”, simply because some techno-geek thought it would be cool to put the number 10,000 in there so that maybe someone might guess it has 10,000 lumens? That’s not branding that sticks. It’s just stupid.
What other industries practice Alfred E. naming? Nominate your favorites in the Comments!
(Alfred E. Neuman copyright Mad magazine)