It’s been revealed that the creators of Purplebricks came up with the name while brain-storming around a kitchen table - and without the help of consultants, branding gurus or marketing experts.
In a podcast recorded in Northern Ireland, where Purplebricks founders Michael and Kenny Bruce grew up, it is revealed that the brothers thought of it with a colleague and friend David Shepherd as they sat around a kitchen table.
Michael Bruce tells the podcast: “We sat around the table and the first thing [David] said was ‘Look, guys, I'm happy to help you fulfil this dream, but I need to know who I'm working for because I won't be able to concentrate on it until I know. ... The first thing I need to know is the name.’"
He then explains that the three wanted the brand “to stand for integrity, strength of character, even to some degree, regalness” and after some consideration the colour purple was considered the most appropriate to symbolise these values.
Bruce continues: “Then we said ‘Okay, we have a vision for a modern real estate business. We don't want anything that's in any way traditional. Our intention is to build a strong and recognisable brand. So therefore, give me something that hints that it's something to do with property and to do with technology.’ Then we put ‘bricks’ and that was it. It was one of the few things where we haven't actually gone and spent a lot of money getting someone with greater brains than us to come up with a name. So, we came up with it in my kitchen and that's how we ended up with Purplebricks.”
He then adds: “In our grown-up business now, we do a lot of that sort of [marketing, brand-testing] stuff but back then, it just seemed right. So we said ‘Look, that's the vision, Purplebricks, it's what it's going to be.’ We didn't do any test marketing. ... We recognised very early that the minute you get Purplebricks in your mind, it's very difficult to come out. We have this feeling the brand would be one that would stick.”
The podcast transcript, now online here, also contains more details of the story we ran earlier this week about Purplebricks claiming that traditional agents only sold around 50 per cent of the properties they marketed.