How to find a good brand name for a new product line
Did the engineers or scientists come up with your present product names? Did legal say they were unacceptable? Isn’t it time to get them back to what they do best?
How many names do you have on the table? There are only so many words to describe products in each industry segment, and they are probably used already!
We are probably the only naming agency headed by a former technocrat, so we can relate to all staff stakeholders in the product naming process. Plus now we have extensive consumer product and service naming experience too, with very large databases of names and roots.
Over 100 new products are created every day in the USA alone. They all need a name. Don’t waste your time and money doing it in house unless you have a lot of experience, a creative team and lawyer on call.
We will generate hundreds of names for each project and present 80+ initially, then facilitate all the management meetings until a finalist emerges. See Process.
When you and your president come up with the name Aviator, say, for your new wireless products, what is your next step? A logo? Packaging? Brochure? Web Page?
While the symbolism and sound of the name might be perfect for your brain, have you ever stopped to think whether or not someone might have used this name before? Of course, both of you have been in the industry a long time and have never heard anyone use that word for products even remotely similar to your new line so you don’t think there can be any problem.
In fact the chances are pretty high in common fields that most common names have been used already. And while there are no specific trademark police, you can be heading towards receiving the dreaded “cease and desist” letter – in which case you will have nine days to change your name.
Wouldn’t you want to protect your name and marketing once you had done a big launch and roll out? Microsoft never checked properly before running with the name Internet Explorer. Years later they settled out of court with the small Midwestern software company who had used the name before them (for a very similar product) to the tune of $7 million!
So before you get started, familiarize yourself with the various trademark classes and make sure you have an extensive list of all the competitors in your field. Even then, run your final few names past a trademark lawyer before you pick the winner. Alternatively, pick a professional naming agency like Brighter Naming that checks names as you go. You will save a lot of time and money in wasted meetings and legal bills.
A Brand is a Promise
When you cut through all the noise, in reality a brand is a promise of an experience. Whether it is the next sweet smelling perfume, a new telecom device, or the next breakthrough chemical coating, it needs a shorthand way to uniquely describe this experience. The product name will be the brand handle, connecting the world to the product and its owner.