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Why Toyoda became Toyota

toyota logo

Why Altering a Spelling Might Change Your Image!

It is with a sad note that we mourn the passing of Eiji Toyoda on Tuesday, a legend in the car business who pioneered a joint venture with GM and introduced the luxury brand Lexus.  But, one of his initial and often overlooked contributions was altering the spelling of Toyoda to Toyota.

The change was sparked by 3 goals:

  1. To stand out – Toyoda is a common surname in Japan and the Toyota name is unique
  2. To project a more sophisticated image
  3. To boost the graphic design options – The repetition of the “t” in Toyota looks more elegant for logo purposes

Take a page from this Kaizen master and discover when it might make sense to alter the spelling of your brand name or your services.

  • Pirch, for example, just changed its name from Fixtures Living (Boy! Didn’t it need a name change?) Of course, this company is also spelling the brand name this way because it didn’t purchase which was already registered.
  • Both Citi and Alli used an “I” instead of the “y” to improve the appeal of their names.

Here’s the question: what can you do? Please share in the comments below!

PS: My webinar on naming might just be the help you’re looking for in creating a name. It is regularly $97, but use this code for the next 48 hours only and it’s just $79 – NameIt (yes – case matters). Click here to order.


1 Comment
  1. Another Japanese legend died this week too: Hiroshi Yamauchi, who ran Nintendo for more than 50 years and led the Japanese company’s transition from traditional playing-card maker to video game giant,

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