The Number 1 Branding Mistake

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The biggest branding mistake companies and organizations make is using an acronym or abbreviation for their company name. Acronyms can be convenient for internal use in your office, but they should never be used in public communications, including social media. There are two main reasons for this.

The first is that acronyms introduce a level of confusion and add another thing someone has to remember about your company to their already overtaxed brain. A person now has to remember both your company name and your company acronym, along with the key messages you're trying to get across.

The second is that you're facing an uphill battle and spending limited marketing dollars and time that could be better spent elsewhere. People generally associate acronyms with the first exposure they had to it. So if they've seen your acronym attached to something else in the past, their brain isn't going to connect it to your company right away. Of course, to you it's clear that your acronym is short for your company's name because your company is your blood, sweat and tears and you think about it every single day. Everyone else isn't thinking about your company at that level. It's a waste of money and time for me to try to get people to associate "TS" with my company when I can just as easily say Think Splendid.

If you want to know just what your company's acronym or abbreviation is up against in terms of mindshare, check out the handy site, which includes slang and pop culture definitions. You may just be surprised at the associations your acronym is stirring up for people when they see it.

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