When creating a business name, it is smart to check Social Media first.
Case in Point: Qwikster the new company that was formed when Netflix split its home delivery and streaming video services.
The argument that Netflix is charging more for less service with this split is the subject of a different post.
Let’s just focus on the business name.
Businesses seek names that are unique, easy to remember, memorable, and often, but not always, are meaningful.
Qwikster meets none of those criteria–in addition it does nothing to capitalize on the brand millions of people associate with the successful video business: Netflix.
Not only is Qwikster not unique–it is alarmingly similarly to names that could be offensive to many of it’s customers. Read Qwikster: Not to be Confused with Quistar, QuickStar, Kwikster, Quickster, Kwik Star, Quick-Star, or Kickstar for more on similarly named companies.
When hearing about the company by word-of-mouth, still the best free advertising there is, one wonders just how is it spelled?
People of a certain age are apt to type in the “most correct” spelling as a first effort, which would be q-u-i-c-k-s-t-e-r.
According to UrbanDictionary.com a “quickster” is someone who can get girls “in the sack quick”
A Quickster is also a type of sports net…and lots of other items.
BTW, “The Quickster” was a superhero that appeared in a single SpongeBob SquarePants episode. OK, maybe that’s not a problem for Netflix, but it does make you wonder about Sponge Bob…buy maybe that is why the character is retired.
Now the customer or potential customer is left to wonder if there are hyphens in the name or what “sounds like” spelling was chosen. And why?
Googling is a challenge when people don’t know how to spell your name...and there are so many variations. Today people want instant results–even people who want their videos mailed to them.
By Googling Netflix you discover the spelling is Qwikster. Ok, we can handle that, right. Well, the execs at Netflix must have been smoking dope, because they didn’t check Twitter for the availability of their new moniker. Nope. @Qwikster is already taken by a guy who mostly tweets about smoking dope and chasing girls. Not exactly the image the video giant will want to many of their clientele.
The lesson in all this? (Ok, there are LOTS)
Social Media is imperative to your business. If you already HAVE a business, check to see if your name is available on on the Social Media sites that your customers frequent–especially Twitter and Facebook. If it isn’t, get as close as possible, use abbreviations, whatever, but CLAIM YOUR SPACE.
If you are just starting your business, or considering a name change, check out the Social Media spaces where your customers hang out, including, but not limited to Twitter and Facebook. If the name is already taken there, TRY SOMETHING ELSE. Especially if it is claimed by a dope-smoking young quickster. Unless that’s your target market, of course.