Brainstorming Session (Intermediate)

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Jill,  Mark and Steve have a brainstorming session about the new LingQ t-shirts.

Steve:Hello, this is Steve here with…

Jill: Jill.

Mark: And, Mark.

Steve: Mark, we are going to do a little brainstorming and the subject of our brainstorming, and maybe we’ll have Mark tell us what it is because it was his idea that we do it. What are we going to talk about?

Mark: Well, we’re actually in the process of designing a T-shirt, a LingQ T-shirt just because I think we would like to promote our site a bit and I think some of our members would like it and it’s kind of a fun thing to do. And, while looking at the T-shirt we thought we need some kind of tag line to put on the T-shirt to let people know in a brief tag line what our site’s all about. So, that’s basically what it’s all about.

Steve: Should we have like a cheeky tag line? Jill?

Jill: Well, you wonder if people will understand it. That’s the only thing. People who don’t speak English as their native language might not get it. So, I think we have to figure out, find something that’s catchy but simple, that you know, people who don’t necessarily speak English fluently will still understand.

Steve: But, there’s another thing. Are we going to have it in just one language? Are we going to have it in many languages? Are we going to have a universal one? What do you think we should do there?

Mark: In a way, it depends on what we can do with maybe with the T-shirt because we’re designing it online. There’s a site that lets you design a T-shirt and then post a link to it on your website and then people can buy that T-shirt directly from that site, both pay for it and have it shipped by that site. So, there are certain restrictions on the types of T-shirts you can make and what you can put on them but one thought I had was maybe we have the English tag line on the front of the shirt and on the back we could have it translated into I don’t know, how many different languages all down the back of the shirt. It might be kind of fun.

Steve: You know, one thing I once did see, very, very long time ago when we were developing sort of a logo or look for the Linguist, one person came up with a design which was the word I like me, Je, whatever in umpteen languages. So you had that word on, as part of a design. I don’t know. The thing is do we want a, essentially a single colored T-shirt and we also have to decide on the color or colors. We could have different colors and with the different colors we could have different language.

Mark: Yeah, I mean there’s nothing to preventing us from making as many T-shirts as we like. At some point, for sure we should have a different T-shirt for each language but initially we need one.

Jill: Yeah.

Steve: Yeah, but I don’t think the cost, you know if you have a run of 50 or 500, if there’s not a significant difference in cost.

Mark:That’s not what we’re doing though. We’re not making any. We’re designing it and it’s a print or deliver on demand, made to order so really, there is no restriction. We can create as many as we’d like. We don’t, nobody pays anything until they order one and they don’t make them in advance.

Steve: Well then I think we should have different languages if it’s just as easy as making one. Once we decide, once we decide what the little logo should be then we just offer it in ten languages. What’s the difference?

Mark: Okay let’s do that.

Steve: Right, well I know. It’s an issue. Are we going to have a unilingual or multilingual? I think we should go for a multilingual one. Now, what do you think should be the logo or the message?

Jill: Well, I think we’ll probably stick with our LingQ logo. It’ll be on there somewhere I would think- the logo that’s on our site and then our URL, http://www.LingQ.com. Then as a matter of putting that, you know, do we put it on the front of the T-shirt, on the side, in the back? Then, like what we’re going to talk about here is trying to come up with just a, maybe a few words and maybe three, four or five words that say something about our site.

Mark: So, why don’t we start doing that then and figure out the details later? One, to get the ball rolling, I thought maybe the world of language was a potential tag line. Any thoughts? Any other ideas?

Steve: That gets us started. What were we before? The power of language? And, I think it helps to know that it will be in different languages so we don’t have to worry about whether it’s comprehensible. I mean just for the sake of argument, what if we only had the logo and the URL?

Jill: That’s what the, I mean the person designing it right now, that’s sort of what he’s sent us, is the logo and the URL. But, I was just kind of thinking that it’s not obvious what that site is so if there are a few words that just connected it to language somehow, that people might be more, you know, would go there.

Steve: You know I personally think the world of languages is not bad. And, as I’m thinking in my mind I think it translates well. And it tells you what it is. And languages is different from language. I mean world of language or the power of language is one thing but once we’re saying the world of languages of the languages of the world, you know and we’re talking about many languages.

Mark: Yeah, but the world of languages or languages of the world is kind of, it’s not catchy. Like, it’s got to be a little catchy somehow. This site teaches language learning. It’s just not, even just adding that‘s makes it a little too, sort of too accurate, too literal. It’s kind of hard to come up with any possibilities on the spot. LingQing the World Through Language, spelling “link” our way. No?

Steve: That’s not a bad idea. I noticed that the last message that went out to our users explaining the different new features we put up, there was the last little greeting there was happy LingQing which – that was kind of good. What about Happy LingQing? The trouble with that is it doesn’t tell people what it is.

Mark: You’ve got to have language in there. We have to have language in there somehow because that’s the one word that can convey at least a better idea of what we’re doing. The one word we kind of have to have in there.

Steve: I mean, if we look at what’s unique about the site, it’s enjoyable. It’s enjoyable language learning, it’s portable, it’s wherever you are. It’s sharing languages. It’s hopefully entertaining. It’s effective. I mean, sharing, share languages, I don’t know. Learn languages, world of languages, language exchange. What?

Jill: I like Mark’s idea the world of language actually. I think that’s quite good.

Steve: I’ll go for it. I think it’s good. I mean, when we get bigger we can be the universe of language but for the time being start small. The world of language, I’ll go for that.

Mark: The more I look at it I’m kind of liking LingQing the world through language but …

Jill: It’s longer.

Mark: It’s longer. That’s a drawback for sure. But, it A. let’s people pronounce or gives them an idea of how to pronounce our name better maybe.

Steve: I guess I’m hung up on this idea of making it universal. So, no, I know you’re not but I think that the world of language translates, no problem. We could have LingQing the world through language, what was it?

Mark: Yes.

Steve: LingQing the world through language for our English one and we start out and just have an English one and we may get ideas from other learners about what to do for the other languages and as you say it’s easy enough to start up a Spanish one or Chinese one, so.

Mark: Yeah, I was going to say that. We don’t have to have the same tag line in every language. We just, we want something catchy in every language. So, it doesn’t necessarily have to be the same. And, probably we aren’t the ones to be creating tag lines in other languages. We should ask our members once we have an English tag line to suggest other language tag lines.

Steve: You know the other thought is that if we want to leave it open for the tag line to be easily translatable, once we have the word LingQ up there we could be connecting through language. But, you want to actually be LingQing through language, right? Yeah.

Mark: Yeah, I mean the whole point is to use LingQ in that way and that obviously then makes it not translatable but I don’t think that’s that big an issue as we just said, we can have different tag lines in different languages. Ideally all the tag lines would include the word LingQ somehow but it’s less meaningful because LingQ is an English word. But if we start by focusing on the English one and then asking other people’s opinions, maybe that’s the way to go.

Steve: Okay, I agree. What do you say Jill?

Jill: I agree.

Steve: So, our brainstorming session number one results in a decision. At least as of Friday.

Mark: I was going to say there’s still lots of time to come up with further refinements and in fact, if any of you people out there, any of you listeners out there have any suggestions we’re more than happy to take them. And, with that I think we’ll move on to something else.

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