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What's in a name

Wayne McMaster

18 October 2012

Choosing your business or product name should be a creative and enjoyable process. The right name distinguishes you from your competition, creates and emotional connection with your audience and helps build a brand that not only holds their attention, but inspires their loyalty.

This week we followed and commented on a post through British Institute of Interior Design (BIID) group on LinkedIn. 'What's in a name', is profound, very subjective and depending on who you believe, a new name can win or lose consumers as far as busines goes. This got us thinking of an event early this summer that caught the headlines in the luxury fashion world.

When Hedi Slimane, the new creative director of Yves Saint Laurent, or rather Saint Laurent Paris, made his mark on this 50-year old luxury brand this summer, it was announced that the fashion house was to be renamed Saint Laurent Paris, dropping its long held ‘Yves’.


We realized that the new name was actually a throwback to the brand’s early days. The inaugural Yves Saint Laurent ready-to-wear line was named Saint Laurent Rive Gauche, which was unveiled in 1966. Impressively, in an industry where everyone has an opinion, Slimane has garnered the blessing of Pierre Bergé, YSL’s co-founder and partner of the beloved designer, even Tom Ford coudn't claim that.


The newly appointed creative director has a vision to usher Saint Laurent Paris into a new day and age and pay homage to its brand promise of “youth, freedom, and modernity”. According to Women's Wear Daily (WWD), “Slimane would return to the ‘original branding,’ thus ‘restoring the house to its truth, purity, and essence—and taking it into a new era’ while ‘respecting the original principles and ideals.’”

The rebranding efforts are expected to take place as the spring 2013 collection appears in stores.


Being able to adapt to an ever-changing marketplace, identifying with your core consumer, while remaining authentic to your brand is the recipe for staying visible, distinguished, and remaining a desirable brand.





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