Tag Archives: SCRATCH

The billboard I walk past often first got me interested when The Good Taste Company’s dips, endorsed by chef Michael van de Elzen, used the term “My great tasting dips are good from scratch”.

Originally, it was the ‘good from scratch component that took my fancy

Good from scratch is very close to, though obviously different to made from scratch. It also ties in too with the company name Good Taste.

But it gives that strong impression they’re doing what I’d do at home myself, starting with vegetables and taking it from there.

The image too is wonderfully reinforcing. It is as if Michael’s chopped up all the ingredients himself and is handmaking these dips, just for me.

Whoever came up with the line and just as important the reinforcing image, deserves a truffle dip, specially made by Michael.

This is because a simple message is really hard to craft in the first instance. Throw in that message also needs to be simple and persuasive, then this mini-story has an even more difficult task.

This is a million dollar message. It is deceptively engaging and believable.

Somebody, literally started with scratch – realised that making a claim ‘made from scratch’ is a harder sell. There’s a danger in its ambiguity of meaning.

There’s an interesting blog here from Robin Shreeves in the Mother Nature Network that asks some interesting questions – around what does the term actually mean.

(Check out from scratch too at the English Language and Usage Exchange – a very interesting read).

The image and words of this advertisement allude to how we’d like to think we’d do it ourselves – we use self-persuasion – that reinforces and reminds ourselves of the superiority of these dips.

It is a million dollar message.



As someone who, for a felted wool ball I tried to commercialise, came up with one name ‘Sheep Balls’, I’m only too well aware of the dangers of a poor brand name.

A recent edition of The Economist has Johnson, a book reviewer, giving the once-over of Alexandra Watkins “infectious little book”.

Watkins, the founder of a branding agency called Eat My Words, has (appropriately in her game) written a book called, “Hello, My Name is Awesome…How to Create Brand Names that Stick”.

She’s created an acronym, SCRATCH, to the mistakes that make customers go “what?”

These what not to do’s come under:

S – Spelling-challenged
C – Copycat
R – Restricted
A – Annoying
T – Tame
C – Curse of knowledge
H – Hard to pronounce

Most of these are, once you read them, relatively obvious.

The point Watkins (and Johnson) makes about unusual spellings is that it requires a customer to remember something different.

People avoid extra effort every chance they can; while a name that is hard to remember or spell is harder to Google – and that alone in today’s digital environment can be disastrous.

The recommendation is not to get too worked up whether your brand can cross borders.

As Watkins points out, unless your brand is truly going to be found in every corner of the globe (really, straightaway Mr/Ms Entrepreneur?) you’re unlikely to offend speakers of a language you’ve never heard of.

Pronounceability in a variety of languages is probably more important. A mostly consonant-vowel syllable structure makes Zalando, Lomoda, Lazada, Jumia, Dafiti and their like easy to say in a lot of languages.

(Some letters, c, q, j and x, have very different sounds even in closely related European languages Watkins says, and “are best to avoid if you aim for global domination”.

The rest of the Eat My Words website, for a San Francisco based business, is full of insightful observations too. In particular, check out their examples of names you will and won’t get from them.