Why smart’s naming strategy is awful for 2022 and beyond
From URLs to hashtags and just plain common sense…don’t use special characters in model names. smart #1; really?
This is about the # — the Octothorpe, number sign, pound (key), sharp, or hash. In marketing meetings and on social media, it denotes a hashtag. It’s also one of those pesky “special characters” that you’ve got to include in passwords.
Crucially, most software treats it differently from alphanumeric characters — 0-9 and A-Z. Differently?
Behind the scenes, it’s used in a lot of code and reserved for select functions. In URLs, for example, they’re used as fragments or for “hash bang” syntax (‘#!’) read by Google and other web crawlers. In Markdown, the technology behind this authoring system, putting a # in the wrong place can add a heading or affect where URLs point people.
Don't believe me? Next time you’re sending a bank transfer, add a #…anywhere…and see how that works for you. And so on.
As far as URLs are concerned, it’s not even #—our computers use %23.
Product names reflect on the company, not the product. You can name a vehicle 911, La Jamais Contente, Turbo Awesome World’s Best GT, smart #1, but those names are also products.
On social media platforms, typing only # will start to bring up possible hashtags, which we all know are informal ways to reference, talk about, share, and even use sarcastically.
No matter how determined a marketer you may be, you cannot escape certain laws of the universe: some characters are just born special.
#stillwithme? #no? #awesome!
“With combination of the “#” symbol followed by a number, smart has defined a recognizable family name for its new generation of all-electric vehicles.
“Now often used to indicate the hottest topics in social media, the “#” symbol is evocative of trendsetting in the digital era - fitting, because ever since its first production car unveiling at IAA in 1997, smart has been striving for innovation and remained a trendsetter in the automotive industry.”
Oh, you’re really doing this?
Let’s run through it together. You’re launching a new model to appeal to The Youths…sorry…trendsetters.
Put yourself in The Youths’ shoes. Maybe you even own a pair. Having just left an inspiring meeting about why the new smart car should be called the #1, you pick up your phone and begin to type:
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