Naming – Branding Strategy

Naming – Branding? It’s difficult right?

Naming – branding is challenging. Selecting a name and establishing a brand identity is a daunting task. Regardless of the phase your business is in, naming your brand remains a primary concern for both business proprietors and managers. For numerous individuals, it’s seen as the utmost critical decision they’ll make regarding their brand—and with good reason.

History abounds with examples of brands that have suffered significant setbacks due to missteps in naming, as a name stands as the most visible aspect of a business strategy. However, what if adhering to the correct methodology could render the process of selecting a name far more streamlined and even enjoyable?

To assist you, we’ll guide you through unraveling the components inherent in a name, revealing its true purpose, and providing strategies for its development.


What’s in a name? 

The method for brand naming Your brand resembles an iceberg adrift in the vast ocean. Whether surrounded by numerous others or isolated, it’s only the tip—the visible portion—that will capture the attention of the “boats” (consumers) passing by.

Your brand’s name serves as the tip – its purpose is to garner attention, resonate with your audience, and forge a connection.

Naturally, you desire this tip to gleam brightly and stand out, being both attractive and unforgettable. Achieving this involves checking off a myriad of boxes: ensuring it fosters recognition, differentiation, evokes emotion, and holds equity. Additionally, it should be easily pronounceable, spellable, concise, and impactful, while also being relevant for practical use and uniquely ownable (for trademarks, URLs, etc.).

Furthermore, it’s crucial to ensure that your brand name reflects a core value or service that your target audience can grasp immediately, effortlessly engaging with your business.


What does a name do?

If a name was only about expressing a value/service and complying with a list of tangible features, surely that would be easier. Your name is Moses, you’re making sandwiches: you call your foodtruck “Moses’ Sandwiches”.

But a brand’s name does more than this. To be successful, a name must also convey who you are, what you do, how you do it and why – better than anyone else. This is highly challenging to define in itself, so aligning this with a name is pretty arduous.

With a plethora of offers out there, it is critical that your name answers the audience’s expectations in terms of service, identity and positioning. Because it can simply lead to gaining customers.


How to develop a good name?

There’s still a belief that the right name comes from divine or genius inspiration. Often business owners start by ‘dreaming up some names’, then reaching out to friends, family and trusted advisors to get their feedback. Often, that is where clients go around in a dreaded naming circle not being able to land on something that works – why?

We find good names are the results of a methodical process that unfolds a brand’s core purpose, uniqueness and knowing a business inside out to turn it into a name. It’s about the appropriate “translation” of a brand’s facts.

Brand Naming – want to give it a go?

  1. Gather everything that your brand and your strategy relies on
  2. Try to objectively unveil what your brand does, distil this and write it down as precisely as possible
  3. Identify what is unique about your business, offering and approach
  4. If your brand was a person, describe what would motivate them to do what they’re doing
  5. List all the words/groups of words that connect with what you just found out.  Your name is probably in this list
  6. Extend the list as long as you can and try to explore different angle, thinking and way to express these core concepts
  7. Finally, reflect on the list of “must have features” mentioned above (including URL availability and legal status):  does the name you picked tick the boxes?

If you can’t generate names that are working for you it might be time to seek help. Get in touch with a local branding agency.

Your brand will become your most valuable asset, so our advice is not to underestimate the naming phase – take your time and invest properly your effort to get it right. Trust us – it’s worth it.

Learn more about our brand naming service.


Taken from an article originally written for and published on Transform magazine – Authors: Sarah Bonnefoy & Tim Dove of Re:brand.

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