How To Name a Brand

How To Name a Brand

There are a lot of lucky brands out there that have come to replace the name of the product itself. While there are a few hipsters out there that call them tissues, cotton swabs, and lip balm, the rest of us tend to stick to brand name vernacular like Kleenex, Q-tips, and Chapstick. These brands have become institutions by their names themselves but it took brainstorming, revisions, work, reworking, and hair-pulling frustration to arrive at a name that could carry the entire weight of an institutional brand. For crying out loud, the microwave was once called THE RADAR OVEN—doesn’t that sound like a comforting and safe vessel to reheat food meant for human ingestion? Although naming is no easy task, a few short syllables that represent your product can make or break an entire brand. We’ve compiled a few tips and tricks on how to name a brand that are sure put your product on the fast track to getting on shelf and so much more. 1. Start Anywhere—nothing is considered stupid. Think it up, and write it down no matter where it came from. Even if it’s just a fraction of a thought, write it down and share it. 7/11 was originally called “U-TOTE-EM” until a customer put in the suggestion box the store was only good for one thing: being open from 7am-11pm. It wasn’t long until it was passed up the corporate ladder and quickly became one of the largest gas station chains under the name 7/11. 2. Computers Can Never Replace Human Creativity—straight from the mind of Anthony Shore, an industry guru in naming, says...
A Big Shift In Big Food

A Big Shift In Big Food

It seems big food conglomerates have finally got the message, loud and clear. In order for food manufacturers to remain relevant, they are following consumer’s divergence from highly processed goods. A recent article in The Wall Street Journal, Indigestion Hits Top U.S. Food Firms by Annie Gasparro, revealed new insights as to how large food corporations are shifting their business model to be more in line with consumer wants for clean, sustainable, and wholesome foods. There’s a new era of grocery shopping driven by consumer demand for food that does more than feed you. Today’s shopper seeks foods that are functional and full of real ingredients that support a truly healthy lifestyle. This means that companies like Kraft Foods Group Inc. and ConAgra Foods Inc. are struggling to maintain market share, sales, and growth. Instead of throwing in the towel, their shifting their focus to meet consumer wants. Not only are they adding new product extensions but changing up their internal structure to reflect consumer tastes and economic challenges. In the midst of economic strife, large food corporations have had to quickly change the entire scope of their company to stay afloat. They’re bringing in new people, new factory structure, and new foods that are more inline with today’s grocery consumer. The new CEO of Kraft said, “I don’t think Kraft has done as aggressive of a job in this regard as we need to…Kraft needs to improve the quality of its food and make its marketing spending and innovation more effective” while Campbell Soup Co. announced an upcoming line of organic soups. While food manufacturers claim to be making...
What We’re Reading

What We’re Reading

As a forward thinking design firm, Interact is constantly working to stay ahead of the curve. Staying up on business journals and food trends is crucial to our success, and yours. The best we’ve read lately is a Forbes article written by Carol Tice on emerging food trends for entrepreneurs. Enjoy the read: If the National Restaurant Association is right — their track record is spotty — you can expect to be eating more arcane cuts of pork and breeds of salmon this year, along with more plant-based entrées and quick-serve pasta. Those are the highlights of the organization’s recently released annual forecast. But some entrepreneurs aren’t riding the obvious trends — they’re pushing into unknown territory in hopes of finding a food craze that’s still under the radar, where they could get in on the ground floor and cash in big. What are entrepreneurs putting their effort behind? Here are ten of the most interesting new food ideas emerging in 2015, along with my take on their chances: 1. 3-D Printed food  When you want an unusual dessert, soon your chef may grant your wish by stepping into the kitchen — and over to his 3-D food printer. The first food-safe printers were unveiled this month at the Consumer Electronics Show. 3D Systems'DDD -3.91% CocoJet (a collaboration with HersheyHSY -0.37%) and ChefJet machines enable entrepreneurial chefs to print out designs in chocolate or sugar. A 3D printing pioneer, 3D Systems plans to open its first Digital Kitchen “3D printed food experience” in Los Angeles later this year. And 3D Systems is bringing its machines to the Culinary Institute of America, which recently announced the first training program that will teach chefs to...
Press // FoodNavigator-USA: The IKEA Effect

Press // FoodNavigator-USA: The IKEA Effect

FoodNavigator-USA caught up with our very own Blake Mitchell to get the scoop on innovative package design that really raises the bar. Described as the IKEA Effect, we can thank brands like Target and Apple for bringing integrity and inspiration to all different fields of design far beyond the traditional. Check out the entire article below for the full dish: “Innovative packaging can really help smaller brands punch above their weight. But which food & beverage companies have really nailed it from a design perspective? Food Navigator-USA caught up with Blake Mitchell, parker at food and beverage brand design firm Interact On Shelf, which works exclusively with grocery brands to get his take… Sometimes it’s just about standing out with a great design on a familiar packaging format – such as Angie’s Boom ChickaPop popcorn, which comes in pastel shades, says Boulder, CO-based Mitchell, who was speaking to FoodNavigator-USA at the Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco. In other cases, new packaging can redefine a category, or create a new one, he notes (sales of Justin’s nut butters really took off after Justin Gold put them  into portion-controlled squeeze packs, which could be eaten on the go). In general, he says, “Thanks to companies such as Ikea, Target, and Apple, there is a total respect for design now that goes well beyond furniture and gadgets.” Retailers are also starting to up their game, he says: “Waitress and Tesco in the UK are at the forefront but we’re seeing some more interesting designs here from retailers such as Target; retailers are also starting to hire big agencies to work on the packaging designs. “I think premium...