1. How to Name a New Business
To name a new business or division, you need to consider all the factors that affect naming a new company. Then you need a clear naming process to ensure success in a timely manner, as well as a way to develop a matching tagline. Throughout these steps you need to be doing continuous domain, trademark, incorporation and common law legal searches to make sure that you do not infringe on some other entities legal rights from the outset.
If you need to change your company name for some particular reason, see first famous business name changes in our Namebase section. Over the years, many a company or product line has benefited greatly from a change of name, once again showing the Power of Names and their usage as a primary marketing weapon.
2. Product Naming Techniques
Management doesn’t always get as emotionally involved in product branding as they do with the company names, but it is just as serious a matter in most cases. In any industry, there are only so many English words, especially in narrow technical or scientific fields, so companies quickly find themselves searching the same pool of words for a new name. And many areas are very crowded. Fore example, a new software product is released about every four hours in the USA and people have been naming shoes and clothing since traders first set up stalls in village marketplaces. Today proper product brand name methodologies are needed to find unique and legally available names that stand out from the crowd of me too products. Good product slogans will help position these in the minds of the consumer or clients.
3. How to Name a New Service or Consulting Business
Although you have no physical box or packaging or item to put the name on, services and consulting businesses also need names and those names can also be protected by trademarks. In fact, International Classes 35 to 46 in Trademark directories are for services only. So while software might have traditionally been filed in the very crowded class 9, now it might more correctly belong in 42 if you are offering the software as a service (SaaS).
The big caution in naming services is to not come up with a long descriptive name that promptly gets abbreviated – and then you are lost in initials from hell bucket, with no name to trademark or to brand – at least not without a lot of time and money. A much better idea is a short memorable unique name coupled with a good service tagline or slogan for positioning.
4. Made up Product Names for a Product Family
There are only a few hundred thousand words in the biggest English dictionary, and these are bigger than most other languages as English evolved from three different families of roots. But there are millions of products in the world and they continue to proliferate at an amazing rate. And they all need a name. Sometimes an executive tells us they don’t want any of those clever coined names, even as they happily munch on an Oreo, while driving their Prius guided by their Garmin GPS or Google Maps and waiting for the next tune on their iPod, Sony Walkman or Motorola phone. So in reality what they are saying is they have embraced new coined names, they are just slow to change.
We understand that, it is often human nature. That is why one of the best compliments we have had is “your names sound like they belong in the dictionary”. Creating new names frees up legal name space dramatically and allows you to cut through the noise of so many sound-alike product names in all search engines. But pure abstract names are harder to embrace and take a lot of brand dollars. That is why our names so often feel instinctively suitable, have good linguistics and phonetics, but also stand up to right brain root words analysis. See The Brighter Name Generator under Process for more details.
5. Trademarks and Other Legal Name Checks
Most small companies don’t have a full time legal person dedicated to trademarks and intellectual property. But their normal business lawyer may know how to register a business at the state or county level. Unfortunately this is not enough in this day and age where most businesses cross state lines, if not even international lines. So Federal and International Trademarks play an ever increasing role, especially in this time of domain name importance as well. Before you call your lawyer, you can do a lot yourself, and a professional naming agency like Brighter Naming has experienced name checkers. Let us help you with trademark and availability checks during all the interim generation steps. Notice how our extensive naming portfolio is also organized by vertical market areas that approximate trademark law categories.
6. Best Naming Practices
Brighter Naming is a strong proponent of best naming practices, whether the project be for a one person sole proprietor startup or a division of a major corporation.
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7. How to Name a New Property
(like Hotel, Resort, Spa, Apartment Building or Shopping Center)
Every day we have to remind clients they are trying to name something, not describe it. Of course, this is not always the case in property naming, where many resorts, theaters or apartment buildings are named based on their location or their big corporate brand name based on the original founders name. However, what if you are new in town and not first? Or you are trying to reposition a building you have just remodelled? Maybe City Towers or City Hotel does not have enough pizzaz for you (in fact they really don’t have any). Oh what super new marketing can you do for the building if you give it a great new name that is full of light and energy, or optimism and direction, or outlook and attitude? See Property and Resort Naming for more information and breathe new life into your development with new positive vibes for your tenants.
8. Naming your New Book, Script, Movie or Play
The old adage says “Don’t judge a book by its cover” but in practice people are very biased to the title of the book, especially if they don’t know the author. Similarly with a script, movie or play – the title is far and away the biggest attention grabber in most marketing materials unless you have a very famous leading actor. As Samuel T Colridge once said: “I could have named my poem Tale of a Drunken Sailor. But then it never would have found the success Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner achieved.”
Unlike other naming agencies, most of Brighter Naming’s team have a strong marketing background, so we are always very conscious of the work your title has to do in the marketplace. We have a proven process for naming titles and both principals of this agency are also authors and editors. See more on how to title your new book or script in the Other Names section.
9. Naming Articles and Resources
Names become trademarks and become very valuable intellectual property. A good overview of trademarks and how they are registered, used and protected is an important skill for most marketing and executive professionals. To get up to date quickly, especially if you are doing your own small startup, please review some of the Naming, Branding and Trademark Articles in the Namebase section on this site. Then use the Resources section as your index on where to go to check and to register names. It will also provide you a guide to other related services.
10. Changing your own Personal Name
From time to time business professionals wish to change their own personal names. We have helped a number of these by providing them with hundreds of first and last names to consider, as well as checks as to how common these names are along with their various roots and meanings. But first review famous celebrity and actors name changes.