Before you answer the question posed in the title of this post, your initial question might be: What is an App-Based Ride Service?

The Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport is using a handy sign directing passengers on where to go to access their favorite one, does that help?


I’m thinking the designated area in the airport is where passengers can hail Uber or some alternative brand to Uber, as opposed to a traditional taxi and/or cab, right?

As you know, we love to write about signs, and the one above sparked a thought and reminder about the importance of a frequent topic on this blog: Brand owners launching a new category of product or service do well to design a simple generic category name too.

Remember how it took Rollerblade an entire decade to come up with “in-line skates”?  Before that, the generic name it adopted at the USPTO was “boots equipped with longitudinally aligned rollers used for skating and skiing,” leading to a multitude of generic Rollerblading misuses.

We covered this topic in the fitness tracker category too, so let’s not forget the insights we covered in: A Missed Step in Branding Fitness Trackers?

Why the concern about having a bite size consumer-friendly generic category name? Besides risking a loss of rights, taking this step can help avoid appearing on our Genericide Watch list.

So, back to App-Based Ride Services, what say our marketing types, does this name appearing on the sign accurately, efficiently, and generically name the category created by Uber?