Due to some recent releases by one of our competitors I've been thinking about branding again. Does anything below strike you as odd or at least interesting?

  1. Google

  2. Yahoo

  3. Microsoft

As you can tell, I'm still not sure what the difference is meant to be between stuff branded MSN and stuff branded Windows Live besides confusing the heck out of people.

Categories: Windows Live
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Wednesday, March 22, 2006 9:39:19 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
Yep, exactly right.
Wednesday, March 22, 2006 11:15:20 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
You have to understand the way Microsoft does branding. You see, once any brand gets successful, we have to change it. Preferably we have to change it to "Windows" something. I think it's actually written into our employment contracts as well. :-)
Thursday, March 23, 2006 5:26:15 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
Speaking from my personal experiences and those of my less computer savy friends and family, I can say the MSN brand is well known and respected. Why the need for "Live"? "Money" works - who doesn't know what that is, and the name sounds cooler than "XXX Finance". I just don't get the "Windows" and "Live" prefixes. I don't think they lend anything to the Windows brand, nor do they get the benefit of the MSN brand. But I'm not gifted with a keen sense for marketing hocus-pocus.
Thursday, March 23, 2006 6:33:31 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)

If you really want appalling branding, you need to talk to Sun.
Thursday, March 23, 2006 6:23:17 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
I bet that it comes down to two executives who are not friends with each other.
Thursday, March 23, 2006 7:42:30 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
I'm willing to give Microsoft a pass while it transitions over to the new branding.

But I think it's a bad idea to name everything "Windows". Especially stuff like "Media" which should work outside of Windows.
Friday, March 24, 2006 2:52:45 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
Dare, have you thought that maybe this tactic is being taken to throw off government trust busters? If you remember, MS had problems like this in the past.
Saturday, March 25, 2006 7:45:43 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
The GYM example you cite is revealing. On one level it shows that Google and Yahoo are very clear (if unimaginative) in creating identities for their respective value bundles. They expect their naming conventions to lead customers toward a “logical” value choice. The Microsoft approach looks more like a mashup—-exactly the opposite of what a brand offering should be. It also suggests that Microsoft looks at brands as after-the-fact “add-ons,” instead of as core value drivers. Since brands are code, more work on the codebase is needed.
Saturday, March 25, 2006 9:49:35 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
Branding of anything from water to umm.. stuffs that roll or flypast pluto should be fairly simple for any person to understand. why does MS have to go for windows live email. windows email is fine but why live?

windows is not a brand but a generic term probably microsoft windows is abrand.
Saturday, March 25, 2006 1:17:27 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
Avalon or Windows Presentation Framework? Indigo or Windows Communication Framework? Longhorn or Windows Vista Home Edition (which just makes me wonder why Microsoft really needs 8 different versions).

Maybe someone ought to tell the marketeers that you don't need to include the company name, or Windows in every product name - XBox seems to do quite well without being called Microsoft XBox.
Saturday, March 25, 2006 2:18:01 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
I think that they're calling everything "web 2.0"-ish Microsoft Live, and the rest MSN. It's probably a transition phase, but most people do not really care if it's labelled web 2.0 or not. I think Live is a great name, and people got used to MSN so both are fine with me, but just be consistent and if you use Live, call it ONLY Live, not Microsoft Live or Windows Live or whatever.
Saturday, March 25, 2006 3:01:17 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
I think it's because three letter acronymns (TLAs) are cool, and these new names lend themselves to being "acronymized" more so than previous names might.

WLM (Windows Live Messenger) vs. MM (MSN Messenger): which would you pick? I prefer my acronymns with three letters, please.

Saturday, March 25, 2006 7:26:42 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
Slapping 'Windows' on everything is part of SteveB and BillG's desperate attempt to keep Windows relevant in an Internet world. If it were up to someone who had a clue about the Web (you guys still miss badly), the naming would be different and better.
Saturday, March 25, 2006 9:53:37 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
I really don't like what they've done with Virtual Earth. I used to have the URL memorized but not any more. Somehow "local" just doesn't connect with me. And if I go to www.live.com, tell me how I find Virtual Earth?? I can't see a link anywhere to get to Virtual Earth. What's wrong with earth.live.com or maps.live.com?? Just make sure that there is an "obvious" way to navigate to all the functionality buried under live.com. Oh yeah, how is it that I easily associate live.com with Microsoft or Windows or MSN??? I'm afraid the folks who brought use Active* and DNA are working on this live.com thing.
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