(image via blogspot.com)
A fashion house’s naming is also its birth. Putting a name to the concept is the first and crucial step in setting up a label of your own.
What’s in a name?
Jean Noel-Kapferer, a noted brand specialist, said that “the best way for a new brand to succeed is to act like an old brand.” Does this mean your label should bear your name?
(image via trendhunterstatic.com)
Not necessarily. Karen E. Klein says that it likely depends on how you position your creations. Are you going to present them as designer’s products or as an idea? Making your company eponymous has its risks – it may be pegged to a certain decade, a particular range of goods, or a current trend. As such, it may be difficult to expand your line to include other types of merchandise or stay relevant through the years.
However, there are ways to counter these pitfalls, one of which involves tweaking brand titles. Some of the pillars in fashion have modified their label names to keep up with industry changes. Christian Dior, Louis Vuitton, and Yves Saint Laurent’s products now simply bear their initials.
Another way is using a name that is likely to appeal to different demographics and countries, like Tod’s. The Italian shoe-making company’s creator Diego Della Valle picked this name because it was easy to pronounce and sounded good no matter the client’s language. Mango, Zara, and Chloé are other examples.
Should You Glory in the Story?
Since you are creating for an audience who can think, feel, make associations, and decide, it is necessary to tap into their minds, emotions, and senses to make an impression. People are apprehensive about what they don’t know, so let your target audience learn who and what they are dealing with. Luxury business strategist Uché Okonkwo says that establishing your brand identity – who you are and how your customers perceive and interpret it – is extremely important, as it positions your brand in your customer’s mind. As such, stories can help you create a label that truly “sticks.”
However, there have been others who managed to create a successful empire despite their mystique. For example, Panerai may be more than 100 years old, but it has only recently started actively promoting its products, which are sought after by collectors and lovers of timepieces around the world.
Right now, with the digital revolution and the emergence of new trends and markets, you have more freedom in fashion naming than ever. What is more important is that the message and image you send to your consumers are consistent, clear, and unique so you stand out from the crowd.
About The Author: BridgeShowroom
Ken Nachbar is a co-founder and partner in Bridge Showroom. Ken loves working with designers, helping them open new doors, find new customers, and grow their businesses. With bachelor's degree in economics and an MBA from the University of Michigan, Ken combines 25 years of management skill and experience with his passion for fashion.
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