Brand v. Branding | Let There be Heat?

In a stroke of ingenuity, a German entrepreneur has found a way to skirt the European Union’s ban on incandescent light bulbs.

He cleverly calls them Heatballs, which he markets and sells as small heating devices.

Loosely translated, he claims the Heatball® is not a light bulb, although it works in a traditional lamp. (Ein HEATBALL® ist keine Lampe, passt aber in die gleiche Fassung!)

Yes, the Heatball® creates light, but this is a side effect of the heat-generating process. To cover all bases and appeal to greenies, the website notes that a portion of the purchase price will be donated to rainforest conservation.

Why is this venture worth noting?

In Brand v. Branding | What’s in a Name, we explored the transformation of an overgrown brown mushroom into the coveted, pricey portobello:

The mushroom wasn't reformulated or shrouded in expensive new packaging. It wasn't bigger, smaller, faster, better or offered in a new color. Nothing changed but the name …

Almost every small business has at least one brown mushroom lurking in the dark, waiting to become a portobello.
If the Heatball® is a great idea, the portobello is food for thought.

Together, they illustrate the countless opportunities we fail to recognize and pursue. How can you:
  • Apply this same innovative perspective to your business?
  • Find fresh names, new uses and clever adaptations for tired or time-tested products and services?
  • Make simple changes to attract more customers?

If you vowed to make 2011 a truly prosperous year for your small business, this is one area where you can take immediate action.

Meanwhile, it's good to be both inspired and amused as we start a bright new year. If a light bulb can be renamed, rebranded and repurposed, and a tough, ungainly mushroom can be transformed into a culinary delight, who knows what possibilities you might discover?

Brand v. Branding | What’s the Difference?
Brand v. Branding | What's in a Name?
Heatball® website (German)
Google translation (English)

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