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“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”  – Shakespeare

The University of Western Ontario, or as it is now known, Western University of Canada, recently undertook a major re-branding of its name and logo. This struck me as strange as I was not aware of any branding issues at the university. It is not like accounting firm Arthur Anderson, which lost all credibility after the Enron scandal and quietly rebranded into Accenture. To my knowledge and in observing the changes made, I don’t see how this repositioning does anything new that could not be achieved under the old name.

Branding is important in terms of image, recognition and market positioning. I am constantly amazed that I can still view television, radio or print media advertising and have no idea what product is being offered.  I thought Branding 101 taught us that you tell people what you do in your name. We brand under names like Advantage Business Financing and Centum Future Mortgage Group so hopefully people have some clue as to the services we offer. The University of Western Ontario worked for me. It even provides insight into the location of the school.

In a business such as mine where personal relationships and the competency in ones craft is important, I find that branding of the person is as important as branding of the company. An experienced real estate agent for example will market themselves and not their broker such as Re/Max. People will know them first and foremost and not necessarily remember who they work for, which is great if they ever need to change employers. Alternatively, newer agents may need to market the brokerage as it may be the only brand creditability they have as a newbie in the business.

We welcome your comments.