A lot happened at the Grammys on Sunday. Tributes were abounding, from Whitney Houston to Etta James, Glen Campbell to the Beach Boys. Adele and the Foo Fighters took away handfuls of awards. Indie rock darlings Bon Iver won for Best New Artist too, but that’s not what the Internet was talking about.
Twitter was buzzing, shortly after frontman Justin Vernon took the stage for a charmingly awkward acceptance speech. Except, it (mostly) wasn’t excitement over the excellent band getting some accolades. It wasn’t even about the comical and nervous thank yous Vernon doled out. No, the Internet demanded to know who “Bonny Bear” was.
That’s right. Somehow the general public has no problem with Nikki Minaj or Deadmau5, but Bon Iver was too much to comprehend. There is even a Tumblr called Who is Bon Iver, much of which is filled now with screen captures of Twitter feeds trying to figure out who Bonny Bear was.
Justin Vernon doesn’t strike me as the person who really cares if people are able to pronounce his band’s name or not. For your company, it’s probably a different story. You need to be able to tell a customer or potential customer who you are without having to dramatically over-enunciate or phonetically sound out your company’s name. It would get old very fast if your reps sat on the phone in their cubicles all day saying, “No, not Bonny Bear – Bon Iver!”
Your name is important. If you plan on having a web presence of any sort, it’s even more important. Can you imagine trying to send someone to a URL who couldn’t even understand what your company name was? What a waste of time! A rose by any other name may smell as sweet, but a Bon Iver by any other name is a hilarious internet meme.