In recent years, many corporations have run public naming competitions to launch their new products. A media attention grabber, these naming events can be an excellent strategy for increasing public awareness in a corporation’s services… if it works out positively.
As the British Columbia Ferries discovered, this strategy is not without risk. In a recent campaign, the company asked the public to come up with names for three new vessels. While the response via social media was large, many of the suggestions received were not exactly what you would call sea-worthy. Some of the more salty suggestions included: Spirit of the WalletSucker, Queen of the Overpriced, and Incompetence Afloat; the Coastal Calamity.
Undaunted by the online heckling, the BC Ferries Company staunchly defended the competition. As the company’s Vice President of Customer Services explained in an official press release: This contest provided “an exciting opportunity for customers to name a ferry that will be in service for decades to come.” The competition, the VP explained, offered an historic opportunity for people to “leave a lasting legacy in coastal communities in British Columbia.” After reviewing the 7,100 name suggestions received, the BC Ferry team selected the following winning names: Salish Orca, Salish Eagle, and Salish Raven. In a statement released by the company, these three maritime monikers were chosen to “honour the Coast Salish people” and reflect the “culture of British Columbia”.
For a complete list of the names which already adorn the vessels of the BC Ferries fleet, click here.