My new column for the Visual Thesaurus tells the stories behind eight brand names, from Aspirin—yes, it used to be a trademark—to Twitter. Full access requires a subscription (still less than $20 a year!); here’s an excerpt.
IKEA. The global home-furnishings company reveals its humble roots in its name, which is an acronym. I and K are the initials of Ingvar Kamprad, the company's founder; the E stands for Elmtaryd, the farm where Kamprad grew up; and the A is for Agunnaryd, Kamprad's home village. As for the names of IKEA's products — Bestå, Poäng, Ektorp, and all the rest — there's a method to their seeming madness.
Read the rest of “From Aspirin to Twitter: Stories Behind the Brand Names.”