Razer: The Origin Story
I joined the Fitch San Francisco team, which was charged with research, product design and development, brand identity, and D2C launch communications that included a website and packaging. I was tasked with naming the brand and developing a nomenclature system that would endure. And I was the lead writer.
I remember thinking we were creating something that would trounce a mouse—and redefine this category. This new gaming peripheral would boast superior technology, enabling the gamer to destroy their opponent thanks to breakthrough precision.
Destroy = raze
Precision = razor sharp
The name: RAZER
What about the idea that a mouse would be no match? What can take out a mouse?
The naming process has since become quite sophisticated with AI and machine learning to aid in producing fresh ideas. But back then, I dived into the world of snakes and reptiles, and while sifting through the Encyclopedia Britannica, I found it:
Native to Sub-Saharan Africa, the boomslang is highly venomous, and its skin shimmers black and iridescent green. I showed it to my teammates, and Cris Logan, under the direction of Vassoula Vasiliou, designed the now iconic mark.
The company has since developed a new logotype but has retained the triple-headed snake icon.
Product design and engineering
Naming & nomenclature system
Website built for ecommerce
CREDITS (Fitch team)
Tom Misage, engineering lead/project manager
Michael Roberts, mechanical engineer
Mark Ciesko, lead product designer
Dominic D’Andrea, product designer
Vassoula Vasiliou, brand/communications lead
Lee Phenner, brand/communications naming; writer
Cris Logan, brand/communications designer
Suzanne Walsh, interface designer
Cathie McDonagh, research lead
Maureen O’Sullivan, researcher