Niner Naming Contest on Mtbr Blows Away Expectations

29er All Mountain Trail

A couple of weeks ago, Mtbr was approached by the good folks at Niner Bikes for a contest idea. They had been hard at work on a brand new 2013 model and they were making it “old school”. This meant: “No carbon, no linkages, just an honest, hardworking, burly steel hardtail in a trail-bike format.” And of course, it’s a 29er! The only problem was, they didn’t have a name for this bike. So what could they do?

Niner turned to Mtbr and the huge online community of mountain bikers for some creativity. Thus, the idea of a naming contest was born.

Titled: “Name the New Niner” this real-time contest allowed forum members to get their creative juices flowing (in a positive manner) and come up with a good name. Like the other 7 models in the Niner Bikes line-up (EMD 9, SIR 9, ONE 9, AIR 9, JET 9, RIP 9, WFO 9) this new bike would have to follow the same naming convention. That meant 3 letters and the number 9. Some of the current model names are acronyms (like the R.ide I.n P.eace, the S.teel I.s R.eal, the M.y D.ust and the NSFW W.F.O.) but this wasn’t a requirement. Armed with only a handful of close-up shots of the bike, forum members would simply post their suggestions in the contest discussion thread for all to see.

What was the outcome? The results exceeded all expectations! The forum members were really pumping out some great, often hilarious names. Even being restricted by 3 letters didn’t dampen the originality of the participants. There were over 700 entrants and the original naming thread got over 27,000 views in just a few days. The response was overwhelming!

We had the chance to ask main marketing diva at Niner Bikes, Carla Hukee, a few questions about the contest and their decision on choosing Mtbr to run the contest: How did you choose Mtbr to run the contest? What was the most compelling aspect to choose Mtbr?
Carla We picked MTBr because of our long relationship with the riders who use the forums, Niner was born on MTBr and we are grateful to them for helping us to start a company that now supports dream jobs for 29 people. Have you done any other naming contests before and how did those turn out? More response this time?
Carla We have had one other naming contest – that was for the frame that eventually became the entire bike line RIP 9. It is a great name. The contest this time had a MUCH BIGGER response – it took two days to get the first list of options sorted! Are the judges accepting bribes? ;-)
Carla Well, I am. I’ll take a case of 395 IPA from Mammoth Brewing. It tastes like crashing your bike in the desert after a rainstorm. Unfortunately, there are 28 other judges, so buying my vote might not be very valuable, heh! Who are the judges?
Carla The last round of voting goes to the employees of Niner – we have to work with this name for a long time, so it has to be something we like. Before we even get to that stage, though, we have to do some pretty hefty trademark research in a number of countries.

Who will be the winner? It hasn’t been decided yet. But here is an unofficial list of a few of our favorites:

AMP 9 – All Mountain Perfection
RAV 9 – Reliable Assault Vehicle
ROS 9 – Roots of Steel
STT 9 – Steel the Trail
WNC 9 – Wolf Nipple Chips
OSM 9 – Old School Magic
BOY 9 – Because of You
JND 9 – Just Noticeable Difference
BAB 9 – Break All Boundaries
FUN 9 – Fast Untamed Niner
SHE 9 – Steel Hardtail Excellence
WNY 9 – Whole Nine Yards
TUF 9 – Totally Unbelievable Flow
SIK 9 – Steel Is King
RAD 9 – Roost All Day
BMF 9 – Bad Motha F******
MUD 9 – Must Use Daily
EON 9 – Everything Old is New
BFD 9 – Beer Fueled Domination
PDI 9 – Pedal Damn It
CLD 9 – Cloud Nine
SAM 9 – Steel All Mountain
CNC 9 – Chuck Norris Cycle (named before he shaved his beard off)
PBR 9 – Pitch, Bank and Roll
RÜT 9 – Rigid Über Trail
BIO 9 – Biking it Oldschool
WAR 9 – Willing, Able and Ready
SKA 9 – Steel Kicks Ass

To find out who the winner is, check the Niner Bikes Facebook page on Monday March 25th:

Photo Thumbnails (click to enlarge)

About the author: Gregg Kato

Gregg Kato studied journalism and broadcasting in college while working many different jobs including deejaying, driving a forklift and building web sites (not all at the same time). Kato enjoys riding local Santa Cruz trails. Besides being an avid mountain biker, he is also a motorcycle fanatic. Two wheels, one Passion.

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