We heard an interesting story on NPR the other day. They were reporting on a survey of the voting habits of millennials, and they drew this conclusion: That while their voting patterns as a group predominantly support Democrats and traditionally democratic issues, they refuse to label themselves Democrats and insist upon referring to themselves as independents.
People don’t like labels because they impose a uniformity and commonality that most Americans of any age chafe under.
The label Democrat depicts very particular imagery, traits and values. There is little room for interpretation or imagination. It is heavy with preconceived meaning.
But when you call yourself an ‘Independent,’ your saying to the world that you are a unique individual who won’t be constrained by labels. An Independent evokes the very ideals of America; freedom, independence, and liberty. Not only are there positive associations with this word, it is more open to personal interpretation.
When you’re considering a new name for a product or a company, it may behoove you to ask yourself if you want a label; clear cut but potentially restrictive, or a name; more open to personal interpretation.