By Kishor Pate
The naming of residential projects can play a significant role in how much attention they garner on the market. While the name-selection process may sometimes seem random (and it sometimes is), there is more often than not a great deal of psychology and marketing thought behind it. The idea is to create a certain impression and aspiration in the minds of the target clientele, and when this is done with enough research and sound marketing advice, this objective can definitely be fulfilled.
The philosophy behind naming a project is guided by the specific nature of a particular market in terms of overall ethos, social configuration and mind-set, and the type of clientele that the developer is targeting. The developer will seek to find a name that ‘speaks’ the local language and also conveys the image or impression that he is trying to create. Usually, the developer will employ an advertisement agency to come up with a suitable name, and the shortlisting and confirmation of the final pick can be quite a drawn-out process.
For instance, project names with a Mediterranean image evoke visions of such countries and the ethos they represent. This ethos would include a lot of things, including a sense of chilled-out global ambiance, exclusiveness and social ‘arrival’. Such names are usually given to themed gated projects and townships wherein the developer has gone to considerable pains to recreate the identified cultural ethos in the project with its specifications, amenities and design, including the interior decor of individual units.
With yet another category of project names such as those that evoke a certain cultural ethos, the intention will be to attract buyers from a certain community within a city. Such names may seek to speak to buyers from the traditional ‘core’ sector of the city, which would like the thought of being able to include such a name in their address.
However, this is by no means a given. The name selection may also be completely random and based on no such particular intention. At times, the name may have absolutely no bearing on anything that the project actually is, and this phenomenon is often seen in the case with mid-income housing projects. In today’s market scenario, there is no shortage of highly imaginative and well-researched project names. By the same coin, there is also no shortage of bizarre project names where one tends to wonder what exactly the developer was thinking.
In the past, the process of naming a project was a lot simpler and less meditated. Previously, a number of good names were up for grabs – today, there is high competition among developers to find the best possible names. Developers will seek to keep the names of their projects a secret until they are ready to unleash the complete marketing campaign, to reduce the chances of competitors plagiarizing these names for their own projects. As of now, there is no well-defined ‘copyrighting’ mechanism available.
Kishor Pate, CMD – Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd.