Sinonym about naming in China
This article has been provided by Sinonym team in China. Sinonym is naming consultancy which offers an unique method and expertise on naming process in China. The Sinonym system aims to provide peace of mind that the chosen name is high potential and low risk. Its approach uses a time-tested system for generating and vetting name as well as an unique cross-linguistic and cross-society feedback panel, through a partnership with one-of-a-kind Phonemica, the award-winning social media site for Chinese languages.
Find a name in China is a brand campaign
Find a name in China is not an easy task when a foreign company extends its business to China. There is different ways to manage it and some of the biggest worldwide companies did not showed the same strategy.
Some companies, like McDonalds, choose a name which sounds similar as“McDonalds” (Mai Dang Lao) in Chinese. Other foreign companies like Apple Inc. literally translate the meaning into Mandarin Chinese “Ping Guo” (苹果); which also means “apple fruit” in Chinese. Finally, there are some companies that do a combination of a direct translation and a phonetic one like Starbucks. They literally translate the “star” of Starbucks and make the “bucks” sounds the same in Chinese.
There are also some examples of excellent translations in automobile, food, luxuries and finance industries which not only make an easy combination of direct and phonetic translation, but also use remarkable words to lure customers` curiosity. For example, Acura named its Chinese brand “Ou Ge” which means praise or eulogy and deliver a message to the consumers that the car is of excellent quality. Another example is Benz which is named as “Ben Chi”, it is a positive written language for “run” and is used to depict a grand spectacle. This shows the brand`s world class quality and top grade.
Getting the wrong name can prove to be disastrous for a foreign firm
Foreign firms need to pay enough attention to find a name in China. A good name can bring a company to prosperity in China. Compared with other factors such as a good business model, quality control and strong network with the local government, possessing a good Chinese name may not be the top priority for executives of many foreign businesses. However, in fact, many firms, even among the most prestigious ones, may find that overlooking the role of a good, suitable name can bring problems.
Google, for example became the object of ridicule in China because of it Chinese name “Guge” which was publicly considered to be strange and unsophisticated. The name upset a great number of its Chinese fans when the world`s largest search engine first launched its Chinese brand name “Guge” in 2006. The name, which in Chinese means “harvesting song”, sounded having nothing to do with the business and being inexplicable. The disaffection drove a group of Google Chinese fans to create a site called noguge.com, aiming to collect suggestions for alternative names. More importantly, people despised the name because it was hard to pronounce and this resulted in lower brand awareness in third and fourth-tier cities than ever expected.
Naming is a specialist profession and having domestic employees which can translate into Chinese is not enough to find the most suitable name. For multinationals, naming its brand in Chinese is crucial; it is a matter that relates to its reputation. Being assisted by a professional China-based company is the best solution to be sure to take the best decision. Sinonym is one firm which can help foreign companies to set up the first stone of your branding strategy in China.