Laurel Sutton Strategy Consultant CatchwordLaurel Sutton, a Catchword co-founder, was quoted in a MarketPlace article about the renaming of government agencies by the Trump Administration

President Donald Trump, who created a business out of licensing his name, recently tried his hand at branding something else: the North American Free Trade Agreement.

The United States, Canada and Mexico struck a deal earlier this month to form the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, which still bears many similarities to NAFTA. Even though USMCA may give American farmers greater access to Canada’s dairy market or it may require more of your car parts to be made in North America, critics say it’s largely the same deal. …

The Obama administration had changed what was then-called the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports to the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition in order to emphasize healthy eating. In line with its reversal of other Obama-era decisions, the Trump administration then flipped the words “fitness” and “sports” to emphasize the latter. Ivanka Trump wrote an op-ed for NBC News back in February stating that “we must break down barriers to youth sports participation.”

Laurel Sutton, a linguist who co-founded the brand naming agency Catchword, said placing “sports” first may be a nod to Trump’s voter base. (Sports viewers, in general, lean Republican, according to a study from National Media Inc.)Catchword quoted in Marketplace

Word order also mattered in the naming of USMCA, with Mexico and Canada trailing after America.

“He [came] up with a name that promotes his own ideology: Which in this case is ‘America First.’ So if it’s going to be an agreement, he’s gotta put the U.S. first over and above everybody,” Sutton said. …

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“Naming is a lot more complicated than people think. There’s the part of naming that’s just about labeling things, like calling something accurately what it is. But then there’s the strategic part of it, where you’re trying to change hearts and minds,” Catchword’s Sutton said.