App for That

American Man Discovers the Secret to an App’s Success is to Name it ‘Butt Crack’ in Portugese

It still uses Apple Maps though.
Not a butt crack. (Photo: Rego.com)

Not a butt crack. (Photo: Rego.com)

Developer Matt Henderson was confused. Why was his new English-language app called Rego, which lets users bookmark locations, blowing up in Brazil? There had to be some kind of reasonable explanation as to why 25 percent of downloads were originating from the South American country.

So, he did something he probably should’ve done earlier in the creative process: he searched the term Rego. Turns out the word translates to a slang term for “butt crack” in Portuguese, according to a story he discovered on Gizmodo Brazil.

And the app’s description probably didn’t help the questionable double entendre:

“Rego’s private. Nobody sees what you add to Rego. But sometimes you’ll want to share a place with a friend–or even the whole world–and Rego makes that easy.”

Oops! Henderson wasn’t totally embarrassed by the discovery since the stupid name helped attract a loyal user base with no international promotion. After confirming with Brazilian friends that the term wasn’t too offensive, he told Fast Company that’s he’s now embracing the name with no plans to change it.

“The Brazilians seem to really appreciate that we took it in good humor and rolled with it,” he says. “The response of a lot of people when they see the video is they end up giving the product a try out of curiosity.”

Hey, there are worse strategies for naming for your startup.

Follow Jordan Valinsky on Twitter or via RSS. jvalinsky@observer.com