VODWith the formation of the Nazi regime in Germany, this country lost its influenceon domains like engineering, art and philosophy. For years, instead of being reminded of Beethoven, Mozart Nietzsche, Goethe and thousands of other important names, people throughout the world could just recall Hitler and his genocide. After the collapse of the Nazi regime, the Allied armies turned Germany into two eastern and western parts and for almost thirty years not only did political conflicts continue, but Germany’s internal situation also got worse. However, within thirty yearsbefore and after the fall of the Berlin Wall andthe reunification of East and West Germany into the Federal Republic of Germany, this countrywas driven to the path for significant growth and development.Not only it could compensate for many of the damages it had suffered, it could also grantitself a leading position in the field of technology and industry.Perhaps it could be claimed that although Germans do not have the marketing intelligence that Americans have, it is clear to everyone that the land to create sustainable brands is nowhere except Germany, a country in where Mercedes, BMW, Porsche, Volkswagen, Audi, Adidas, Fanta and dozens of other major brands have been offered to the world.

It is to say that online marketing is considered one of the most profitable and the most advanced kinds of marketing in this country. Since on the one hand Germany, with its approximately eighty-one million people population,is the most populous countries after Russia and has the second highest number of Internet users in Europe (nearly 86% of the German population use the Internet everyday) and the fact that Germans are among those who spend long hours watching television in the other hand, it would quite natural that VOD (Video On Demand) is considered one of the most lucrative markets in this country.

If Maxdome is not the most popular channel of Germany in VOD Market,it can definitelybe considered as a hardy local competitor for the American Netflix and iTun with more than 15,000 videos itreleases to its audience. With its fair prices and good quality and service,Maxdomeis a channel which has made me its customer on the weekends.Nevertheless, Germans have always been committed to maintaining the originalityof a brand and havedone the least stupidities about their brands. To be convinced about this fact, you just need to take a look at the course of changes in German brands’ logos (like Mercedes or BMW)as opposed with those of American brands (like Coca-Cola and Apple). This time, the young Maxdome which was founded in 2006 did something strange and unreasonable:changing logo in the worst way possible!

At the start, Maxdome had to pay special attention to this point that naming a company and its products should not be based on the personal taste or faulty naming procedures because it can influence the future success of a business greatly.Naming new brands has its own especial rules and principles which I previously discussed it my “Good names sell better, Good names survive more”.In this article, under the title “Names should be influential” (rule number 11) I have said that each name is useful for a given commercial, industrial or economic field. Use names that draw the listener’s attention after being heard to a certain product category or a specific group of businesses.

It seems that Maxdome has not taken such rule into consideration. In German, Maxdome is pronounced as /ma:ksdom/. However, with a minor change in the pronunciation of this word, it can sound like the word Kondom “condom” because they can in fact be considered as rhymes.Since before watching the commercials of this company I had just heard its name (word-of-mouth marketing), I supposed that my friends were speaking about a type of German condom rather than a VOD channel. However, with a little research I came up with two possibilities only: Maxdome’s naming method had been wrong; or I have a sexually oriented mind!

Interestingly, the majority of those whom asked about this issue do also have a sexually oriented mind! Come on, do not worry! If you feel the same as me and many others when you hear the word Madame, it’s not necessarily because you are a person with a sexually oriented mind. Maxdome could be a good name for a new brand of condoms, denoting a more natural feeling and extreme pleasure!

maxdome-logosNot only this issue did not leave my analytical and of course sexually oriented mind, but everything also got worse when I saw Maxdome’s new logo. Maxdome has chosen a logo with the same font and color that o.b., the most famous tampon producer, had already chosen and utilized in its website and advertisements. Maxdome’s new logo is (or at least it seems that it is) copying o.b.’s logo and color in a quite clumsy way. However, it is interesting to say that the brand name o.b. itself sounds like a Persian taboo which is used to refer to gays (much like lumia which in Spanish means a prostitute). If someone even does not know what VOD is, he or she most likely knows the o.b. which belongs to Johnson & Johnson Ltd.

As the famous German brands have always paid attention to their brands more than anything else, thisob-logo young German VOD company as well as any other company should pay attention to maintaining its originality. Trying to position a brand and to maintain that position in customer’s minds (as we originally created it) is our most important task in the process of brand management. For years, Mercedes-Benz has been designing cars which, although their technical features have been being increased steadily, always have followed a certain form in the interior design and the body.Therefore, not only has Mercedes-Benz always followed its first lucky models, it still uses the Mercedes-Benz clock (which embedded in the dashboard) in even its most modern vehicles like those in the S-class.

If branding with a difficult name wouldn’t be impossible, but it would be definitely harder when you’re competing with a unique and original name.Brands which anyhow lose their position in the customers’ mind are doomed to perish sooner or later.If you do not maintain your originality, you will lose your brand, and if they lose your brand, you will be nothing afterwards. My experience has shown me that as soon a skilled competitor with a top name shows up, the present situation is always challenged. The biggest, most powerful and most eminent empireof the world for centuries was that of the Persian Empire, i.e., the country Iran today. That empire with all its greatness collapsed overnight. As a result the history tells us that we should be more careful!

Author: Tom Cyrus

(Just after two weeks of this article Netflix said they will provide services in Germany. That was a branding mistakes in a German company)