Ingredients and Qualities of Good Brand Naming

Naming is an important part of branding a product or a business. More than that, an important first step when naming a business, product or service is to figure out just what it is that your new name should be doing for you. The most common decision is that a name should explain to the world what business you are in or what your product does.

On a very fundamental level, there are two basic ingredients of the best evocative names:


A competitive analysis is an essential first step. How are your competitors positioning themselves? What types of names are common among them? Are they all projecting a similar attitude? Do their similarities offer you a huge opportunity to stand out from the crowd?


The next step is to carefully define your positioning. The idea is to position yourself in a way that rings true in a fresh way–that cuts through all of the noise out there. The goal is to have your audience personalize the experience of your brand, to make an emotional connection with it, and ultimately to take you in. To redefine and own the territory.

From there, a name should contain as many of the following qualities as possible. The more of them that are present, the more powerful the name:

A name that people will talk about.
A name that works its way through the world on its own.
A name that’s a story in itself, whether it’s at the local bar, on the job, or on CNBC.

Emotional connection
What does the name suggest? Does it make you feel good? Does it make you smile? Does it lock into your brain? Does it make you want to know more?

How does the name physically look and sound? How does it roll off the tongue? How much internal electricity does it have? How does it sound the millionth time? Will people remember it?

Does the name have attitude? Does it exude qualities like confidence, mystery, presence, warmth, and a sense of humor? Is it provocative, engaging? Is it a tough act to follow?

Deep well
Is the name a constant source of inspiration for advertising and marketing? Does it have “legs”? Does it work on a lot of different levels?


Tag: naming, brand name

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