Creating New Business Names

Fine music requires time and fine materials and tools. Same for fine names.

If you take two common words like Star and Bucks, and combine them, you have a unique new name Starbucks. Similarly, if you take a common word like Folio that is not used much in your industry, and combine it with an industry descriptor like Wines, you have FolioWines. Similarly, as we did for a real estate client, we combined some strong brand values in Leader and Gate, to make LeaderGate.

If you are still struggling to find a new name, try taking all the simple little words you passed by early on, and combining them, even if it is in somewhat unusual manner. Of course, you have to be careful about over exposure and closeness to other names (always a legal or trademark caution here). Just because you like the root Info, doesn’t mean you can combine it easily with anything else. There are already over 51,000 domain names registered that start with Info! On the other hand, SurveyMonkey is cute and everyone remembers it.

But be careful when you take very long names and use them together. No one is going to say Advanced Micro Devices every day, and pretty soon you are AMD. Which might be OK if you have a lot of branding dollars, but otherwise you are just lost in the alphabet soup. See a companion article on Nothing But Initials.

What if you don’t just combine them, but instead you smoothly merge them together? You take the words Verity and Horizon, to create Verizon. Or Cellular and Singular and create Cingular. Or Telecom and Mobile to make T-Mobile? Or Open and Node, like we did for a new software company today called Openode.

Or if you want your survey results to Zoom back quickly like a Boomerang would, then you can just change one letter and call yourself Zoomerang. Similarly, we came up with Zymmetry for a logistics tracking company name. See Our Full naming Portfolio for more examples.

All violins are made from wood and string, yet there are many ways to craft them and make them “sing”. Same with naming. We have just listed a few here. The new creative supplement to Athol Foden’s book Brighter NamesPragmatic Naming for the Smaller Business (see includes many other tricks the professionals use. Alternatively, of course, you can call us and we will create hundreds of potential names in whatever style you like, just to find 100 or so to present to you. Then together we will refine the list down to 20, 10, 3 etc. All the while we will also be doing trademark and availability checks too – so that your final name not only sounds right, but also clears all usage, registration and trademark checks.


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