It's smart to carefully consider the name of your organization or product. It becomes the most frequently used asset of your identity, appearing in spoken, written, and visual communication. At Studio Dott, we help you find the perfect name.
As an entrepreneur, you must fully stand behind this name. It needs to evoke the right emotions in potential customers and users. Moreover, it's the asset you're least likely to change later because changing it involves significant effort.
At Studio Dott, we help businesses not just with creating a visual identity but also in finding the perfect name for their project. When the city of Mechelen approached us to develop an identity for their "job-without-an-application" project, the time pressure was high. So, we set up a process for them to collaboratively find a new name in an efficient manner. Discover our process in this blog.
"To think of a good brand name, it's essential to write down as many ideas as possible."
Like any branding journey, it's crucial to have a clear picture of the organization's identity. The initial part of the process involves an extensive introduction. We delve into the 'how, what, and why' as well as the organization or initiative's values and principles. To refine the brand, we consider opposites to make targeted decisions. For instance, do we want to convey a professional or playful character? This leads to interesting discussions among the decision-makers. We go through the structured process 'live' via an online whiteboard.
Set opposites side by side and jointly decide what you want your name to convey. Consider what to factor in when coming up with your name. Should it, for example, be future-oriented and meaningful?
There are various ways to create a strong name. Generally, there are 3 categories and 4 construction possibilities. Below is a clear description of these approaches.
Descriptive name: Describes what the brand stands for. For example, BeterBed.
Suggestive name: Represents indirectly what the brand stands for. This can be through a metaphor, analogy, or association. Think of Twitter (a platform that, like a flock of birds, tweets to each other) or Captain Iglo.
Abstract name: Consists purely of (pleasant) sounds or combinations of letters and otherwise has no meaning. At the introduction of the brand, these do not or barely evoke any associations. For example, C&A.
Real word: For example, Caterpillar.
Compound words: For example, Facebook or Snapchat.
Invented words: For example, Kodak.
Acronyms: an abbreviation that is pronounced as a word. For example, HEMA.
Differently spelled words: For example, Flickr.
It's always good to glance at the competition. This way, you discern what you like and what you definitely don't. Collaboratively, explore themes and requirements you'd like the new name to reflect, such as 'positive,' 'meaningful,' and 'new opportunities.' Knowing this, you have a clear direction for brainstorming. The key here is to go full throttle: all ideas are good ideas.
During the individual brainstorming, everyone works separately to come up with as many names as possible. In doing so, you start from what has been agreed upon in the previous steps. Which themes are important? What do you want to convey? What are your values? Also, keep the various categories and structures at hand for inspiration.
Everyone presents the names they have created. We collectively go through all the suggestions and extract the strongest ones. We do this using the Dot technique. Everyone receives an equal number of 'voting dots' they can assign to their favourite names. This way, we discover common themes and identify several favourites.
After this process, we've collectively chosen a number of names that everyone agrees fit within the brand and the values they should convey. Coming up with a name is just the first step, of course. Following this, we need to ascertain whether these names are already in use, if they are protectable (registered business name, trademark, etc.), if the URL is available, and whether the name has any unintended meanings (in another language, for example).It's always a good idea to sleep on it before making a final decision. This way, you can be certain you're 100 percent behind the name. After the workshop, we've also given everything a chance to settle. You know what they say about Rome...