The “Shack” “BevMo” and “WaMu” and Good Names Turned Bad
I also saw the new “Shack” commercials like Devin and basically thought “wtf?”
In a time of market revolution with social networking and two way communication being the standard between producers and consumers companies are doing all they can to stand out. Name changes are nothing new.
Years ago when Beverages and More opened its doors there was lots of buzz. Everyone wanted to check it out because there hadn’t been a store like that before. Everyone raved about it, but the name was still a mouthful. Quickly, Beverages and More regulars found a quicker simpler way to say the store’s name: BevMo.
It was what shoppers wanted; to feel included. BevMo regulars could have that “first name” relationship with the store. They connected with it on a deeper level. It was “cool” to call Beverages and More “BevMo”; you were “in”.
This was all shattered when they changed to actual name to BevMo. Out were the personal relationships and feeling of inclusion. The name change which made the store sound younger, caused it to lose its cool factor. The name BevMo which used to be hip now is just another lame attempt at repositioning to a younger crowd.
Washington Mutual did the same thing. I was always a Wells Fargo man myself, but for all my friends that had accounts with Washington Mutual there was a little jealousy. I wanted a cool nickname for my bank. “WaMu” was a great nickname and also had the same “first name” feel that BevMo once had. WaMu followed suit with BevMo and made WaMu their actual name. Gone was the fun nickname, it just became normal and boring.
History shows that the name change may not be a successful one for Radio Shack. As soon as I saw the rebranding commercial I couldn’t help but think about the name shortening problems that happened previously.
The Shack’s name change is a little different though. I am not aware of anyone using “The Shack” as a nickname (like BevMo and WaMu) for Radio Shack. They don’t have to ruin their cool nickname because they never had one. So maybe this name change will be more successful.
With all the competition in electronics sales it may make no difference if the rebrand is successful. Radio Shack is probably on its last legs.
All I know is Radio Shack, The Shack, The Radio, The Shackio – it doesn’t matter to me what they call it. With Best Buy, Costco, Walmart, and Target I have no reason to walk in their doors.
Follow Todd on twitter: http://www.twitter.com/toddliss