Capital One

Product &  Service Naming Naming Architecture
Naming Guidelines Naming Partnership

Capital One’s CMO was done with boring names – the expected silver, gold, and platinums that didn’t make an impact. Over the course of a multi-year partnership, The Naming Group developed an un-bank-like namescape in leading name development on more than 10 product launches which helped them move beyond their well-known slapstick Vikings ad campaigns into the more polished, yet still rebellious brand led by A-listers like Alec Baldwin, Jennifer Garner and Samuel L. Jackson we know today.

THE CAPITAL ONE NAMESCAPE

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  In our multi-year partnership with Capital One, we worked to not only to transform the namescape from ho-hum to brand-bombastic, ...
  In our multi-year partnership with Capital One, we worked to not only to transform the namescape from ho-hum to brand-bombastic, but also worked closely with leadership to make the order, flow and outcomes of internal naming processes more successful. In naming all of the bank’s credit cards, we created a namescape strategy to reach a more upmarket audience while still retaining their bold yet approachable brand personality. These dynamic names like Venture, Spark, Quicksilver and Journey, channel a unifying articulation of Capital One’s maverick, not-your-typical-credit-card persona. Behind this great namescape is, of course, namescape-driven culture. Key outcomes of our internal naming work are:     Name Type Continuum Checks Our famous Name Type Continuum became ingrained at Capital One as a key project tool across all business segments on all name development projects. Stakeholder Engagement Process modifications to include c-level leadership earlier and more regularly throughout the naming process.
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VENTURE

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The first of many credit card names we developed, the name Venture reflected a major shift in direction for Capital One, ...
The first of many credit card names we developed, the name Venture reflected a major shift in direction for Capital One, away from the timeworn silver-gold-platinum language and toward a more strategic, and brand resonant approach to naming.   Recognizing the strategic opportunity to differentiate, we quickly saw Venture as a perfect name to lead the brand in an empowered new direction. Venture is an amazing word, because it embodies a number of powerful meanings. Most readily, it says “adventure”, speaking to the travel rewards that it offers in abundance. It speaks to exploration. It speaks to commerce, with cues of a “business venture” or “venture capital.” But it also says “daring” – literally promising an uncertain destiny that distinguishes the name from other credit cards in how you – the cardholder – have agency. The power to chose your own course. Find a flight that suits you. Go in a bold new direction. Above all, Venture is an action verb that associates the card not with a cold, static metal or gem, but with motion. That a human makes. It becomes personal and inspirational. Spirited and energetic. With a Venture card in your wallet, you are going somewhere.
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SPARK

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When we were charged with naming a card for business, offering similarly robust rewards as Venture, the strategic road was ...
When we were charged with naming a card for business, offering similarly robust rewards as Venture, the strategic road was paved for us. The namescape criteria we had set in place with the other names we had developed helped us define not only what makes a good credit card name, but a good Capital One credit card name: active, dynamic, and the promise that the card is not the end, but the beginning of the story the customer is free to define. For a more serious business audience, we translated this story as Spark. The Spark that inspires smarter business decisions, great ideas, and explosive rewards. And again, it’s very “Capital One” in its unique dynamism.
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QUICKSILVER

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In the world of credit card rewards, there are some consumers that don’t want the miles, the free nights at a hotel or ...
In the world of credit card rewards, there are some consumers that don’t want the miles, the free nights at a hotel or discounts at their favorite restaurants. They simple want cold, hard, cash – and quickly. To serve this crowd, Capital One developed a no-fee, no-gimmicks cash rewards credit card.  For a card without a complicated rewards structure that promises no-hassle cash, we developed the name Quicksilver. On a literal level, this name speaks to the core action of the card – getting silver (money) to you quickly. From a broader namescape perspective, Quicksilver fits perfectly alongside other maverick, spritely, action-driven names like Venture, Spark and Journey.
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JOURNEY

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The same bold, maverick spirit put in motion with names like Venture and Quicksilver became a convention with Capital One’s ...
The same bold, maverick spirit put in motion with names like Venture and Quicksilver became a convention with Capital One’s card designed for students: Journey. Journey, too, is all about action. Adventure. Ambition. Again, the card isn’t defined by a static indicator of prestige, but a motivating promise. A challenge to choose your own path.
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Capital One 360

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When Capital One acquired ING Direct, they needed a name that encapsulated all the benefits loyal ING customers had come ...
When Capital One acquired ING Direct, they needed a name that encapsulated all the benefits loyal ING customers had come to know and love (like extremely high interest rates and no-fee, no-minimum checking and savings accounts), and also preserved and extended equity in the Capital One brand. The name 360 speaks to comprehensive benefits, flexibility and support – all the things that banking customers crave and rarely receive from large financial institutions.
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