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This past October, I was pumped about a new iOS application called Oink. It was headed-up by Digg.com’s founder Kevin Rose, and experienced aggressive growth in the first few seeks of being on the Apple app store, making it’s brief 5 months of existence bittersweet for highly engaged community members. If you notice, the oink.com landing page received a significant bump in daily attention and reach on Nov 3rd when it was released, and continued to garner attention through to the Thanksgiving holiday. (below)
While it continued to grow, oink.com didn’t get another big attention and reach bump until they announced that Oink was headed for retirement on 3/14/12.
While it seems a little clearer now that Kevin Rose and his team and Milk were looking to operate some quick experiments with trends they identified in the mobile market we must wonder what we can expect from Kevin Rose in his new role working on Google+.
What I had always found interesting from a branding perspective was the choice to name the application Oink, it’s cute and easy to ‘get’ however with the slightest bit of searching around you’ll quickly learn of another application under the same name with a much different purpose (NSFW). In retrospect, I will always wonder if the Milk team knew about the Android Oink application and didn’t care or if they simply were too far into the project to re-brand? Suffice it to say that I don’t believe the marketing or branding had much if anything to do with closing the application down, it is a reminder to start-ups and new businesses alike to do considerable research before going full-steam into branding their businesses. This can be as simple as checking other registered businesses, search engines, domain names, and social media handles (ahem, Netflix’s Qwikster).
Lindsey Mark works in Client Relations at Compete and is responsible for the strategic development of client retention and support policies for compete.com, with a focus on education and training efforts. She graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, NY so she's a certified technology junkie and open source advocate. When she's not thinking about marketing or training digital 007's at compete, she's doing yoga & blogging about gluten-free diet and lifestyle. Find Lindsey on Twitter as @linji, Google Plus as Lindsey Mark or connect with her via LinkedIn.