Information Architects Japan writes about rebranding, and the risks involved. This is something many of us have to think about. It’s certainly the case in journalism, as the vessels we work on get smaller and change course, and occasionally sink. Sometimes, though, even a poorly named brand proves seaworthy. Consider the example of Gaijinpot.com, a popular site for foreigners in Japan.
“It has a terrible name: “gaijin” means “alien” in Japanese, and “pot” has a very dubious second meaning; thus to Japanese ears “GaijinPot” might sound somewhat like “AlienDope”.’ Still, it had a big enough following that changing the name just wasn’t an option.
Hmmm. Aliendope. Has a nice ring to it… Maybe I’ll consider it for my next rebranding exercise.