Best and worst brand names

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EVERYTHING BEGINS WITH A NAME. Minneapolis naming expert Pollywog on Dec. 4 released its annual list of “The Best and Worst Brand Names of 2008.” Some of the company's top honorees included Macbook Air, Google's Chrome browser, Blu-ray by Sony and instant messenger Yammer. Others cited as lacking innovative or composite messages were Google's G1 mobile phone, Toshiba HD-DVD, Tiguan by Volkswagen and online traveler community Yatt'it. “Finding an available name is tough,” said Devon Thomas Treadwell, a principal at Pollywog. “Too many brands are based on invented, meaningless words. A brand name that connects to a known idea is far more powerful,” he said. John Stucker, also a principal at Pollywog, agreed. “You have to dig deep, to words that link to your brand in unexpected ways. Look for a name that makes a connection to your brand promise,” he said. Treadwell and Stucker have more than 35 years of agency experience, working on such leading brands as Disney, Paramount Home Video, 3M, Southwestern Bell and Best Buy. The complete list of Pollywog's “Best and Worst Brand Names of 2008” can be found at —Tanya Meyer
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