To have and to have not

Listed under "must-have gadgets" (for real), is this, the carbon-fiber travel case. All shiny and pretty; a little masculine, but did I mention that it's shiny. I kind of go for some masculine accessories because the flowery and the frilly just do not work for me. I'd rather have Chuck Taylors than Manolo Blahniks (honestly, but can I not have both?). I've always thought the carbon-fiber briefcases are kind of silly. But since a gorilla is going to be throwing around my luggage (as I say "pretty girls don't carry on"...well, those of us that have to work for it...and do the best we can), this make sense to me. And it's shiny.

I want. And then I read the accompanying information. And I saw 2 things that caught my eye: "halliburton" and "$2500." And 2 little problems make one big branding issue and put this item into the category of "amusing but I would just never buy." First, I have to wonder if this company, or subsidiary, or whatever, has ever thought of changing their name to, you know, disassociate. Is Halliburton such a great name in luggage that it cancels out the bad juju of that government contractor business? I hear this name and I think "boo!" And not the Anderson Cooper kind. The exclamation not the noun.

Then there is the price, which by itself is a "meh." I'm a big proponent of buying quality to save money; buy it once, use it forever. Truth be told, I'm willing to put down similar cash for a Chloe handbag. And I will use it forever. But it's a fashion statement that is on my arm regularly. And it's a fashion statement that will not be tossed around by gorillas. Anyway, the price in and of itself is expensive but I could see how a frequent traveler could rationalize it. If they can't they should call me and I could talk them through the process. It's part of my regular mental dialog and I have come to believe that I am quite good at it.

But the problem to me is that the company name brings to mind a certain reputation, which is absolutely supported, if not enhanced, by the price. Yeah, yeah, it's made out of airplane wing stuff. It may just as well be made out of kitty hearts and puppy dog tears as far as  am concerned.

My point is this: price is part of the brand. As is reputation. Am I wrong to think that they should either drop the price or drop the "Halliburton"?  This may very well not be the same "Halliburton," but it really does not matter. Could bge a subsidiary full of wonderful people and products. Does not matter.  Because anyone who pays attention thinks the same thing when they hear that name. Is there are target market out there that think "Oooh, Halliburton. Get me some of that!"  

Am I right or am I right?

Comments (2)

  1. You got me curious, so I looked it up. I think you might have an extra zero there (or else I found the wrong thing):

    The wikipedia entry on zero haliburton is also interesting.

  2. HeatherLeigh says:

    In the FastCompany article, it definitely says $2500. It could be a typo, but if I had to guess, the materials are the difference.

    Interesting to know that there were other brand names the culd have chosen from. And the relationship between oil fields and luggage.

    Thanks for the info, Michael!

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