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Will Nordica fly?

Experts admit names are tricky to invent

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PHOTO: Liis Treimann / Postimees

Name Nordica picked for national airline uncovers nonsense of public contests, say advertisement experts.

Advertisement agency Der Tank creative manager Joel Volkov said Nordic Aviation Group was forced to alter the name due to its very length. «In that, I think, they have definitely succeeded,» said Mr Volkov, adding that in his ears Nordica sounds like a nice name for a girl.

In January, Nordica board member Erik Sakkov said their new name would definitely be more Estonian. In a statement this Tuesday, he explained that as Estonia has always rather been classified by itself as a Nordic nation, the heads of state wished this would be stressed.

«And Estonian name would have been cool indeed,» said Mr Volkov, adding that the decisions do get born at councils.

At that, the new name will need a marketing camping. And while this could be done really cheap, with an airline the approach may not be expedient. «Would ne nonsense to do it cheap,» said he, assessing the need to be at up to €20m. As for brand identify, the airline unveils it at the end of March.

Nordica, it has been noted, is also the name of an extremely well known Italian maker of ski boots. In this, Mr Volkov sees no problem, noting that differences of brands can always be underlined by prefixes and suffixes. Indeed, the national flag carrier is busy registering trademarks like Air Nordica, Nordica Air and Fly Nordica.

Traditionally, names and trademarks are registered in certain categories only and in other categories the same names may be used with other kinds of products or services.

«Large groups try to register names of interest in as many categories as possible, and with car brands or food brands, specialised patent bureaus toil hard to «clean up» the name in as many nations as they can,» explained advertisement organiser Olav Osolin.

Mr Osolin thinks it comes as no surprise to the national carrier that web search nordica.com leads to a ski shoe maker website.

«They must have already have fallen in love with their Nordic Aviation; on the other hand, this serves to show the nonsense of all kinds of public contests where you get 450 proposals and none fit,» he opined about the backdrop to what has transpired. Nordica was tabled by a company’s own employee.

Mr Osolin said seeking a new firm or brand name isn’t as much a creative flash as a tremendous amount of analysis. Initially, it is decided about the direction. Then, lots of names are offered, and then they go about finding out potential related problems.

«In the world today, it is very hard to find a name totally problem-free, wherefore rather the path is to go about solving problems by way of negotiations, where a name or domain may be bought by the new interested party. It may not work every time,» explained Mr Osolin and recalled an incident where a department store initially named Lemon was beaten in dispute by a small software firm Lemon who was unwilling to give up its name and domain. The new name for the department store was Melon. For that, Tank got awarded in 2003 with Golden Egg.

A while ago, Mr Osolin toyed with the name Nordica himself. Godfather to brands like Sportland, Stokker and Citysport, Mr Osolin was the one who came up with a new name for Toomas Luman’s building company Eesti Ehitus when the latter was seeking a name more neutral having decided to expand to other Baltics.

Mr Osolin remembers how they went by the desire to cast the Estonian construction company as a Nordic corporation, wherefore at Kolm Karu they went thru all kinds of names linked to «Nord» also including Nordica and Nordeca. At that, they endeavoured to find a name with which internet domains .com, .ee, .lv and .lt would be vacant. In the end, Nordecon proved to be like that.

«With Nordica, nordica.com referred to the well-known Italian alpine skiing boot maker, and back then we were also facing problems with the insurer Nordica Kindlustus so the name dropped off the list,» he said.

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