’Tis but thy name that is my enemy;
Thou art thyself, though not a Montague.
What’s Montague? It is nor hand, nor foot,
Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part
Belonging to a man. O, be some other name!
What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet;
So Romeo would, were he not Romeo call’d,
Retain that dear perfection which he owes
Without that title. Romeo, doff thy name;
And for thy name, which is no part of thee,
Take all myself.
– from Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
Perhaps a rose called by any other name would smell as sweet, but it could be much harder to market!
Where to begin?
Brand strategy is the first step, to identify your North Star. How will you know if you’re going in the right direction without an objective, and how will you get there without the right tools for navigation? During the brand strategy definition, we examine the brand landscape – competitors as well as relevant references — along with positioning, audiences, brand attributes, and what makes you different. We help you define your vision, mission, values and purpose.
This brand strategy is a written and visual document which starts to shape your tone of voice, and it acts as the creative brief for naming. Once we have a technical brief covering language, trademark and domain name requirements, we start to brainstorm and come up with literally tens of thousands of possibilities.
Some routes we follow when creating a new name for a brand, service or product are descriptive (often the hardest to trademark), compound, historical, evocative and out-of-the-box. Irreverently applied to our new client “Rose”, these routes could look like this:
Descriptive – “ScentFlower”
Compound – “Fragrapetal”
Historical – “Aphrodite” (the rose was closely associated with this goddess)
Evocative – “Silk”
Out-of-the-box – “Bingo”
We have created a unique and in-depth process that takes us through to the final suggested name, which can then be submitted for full searches and trademarking.
Over the past hundred years or so, requirements for naming and branding have changed drastically, and so have types of names. Some early descriptive names like Coca-Cola still survive. Some of these morphed into initialisms — think International Business Machines/IBM — and eventually we moved into more unusual names like Apple (originally the more descriptive Apple Computer Company). Fast-forward into finding a name which matches an available domain name like bit.ly. Incidentally, that link-shortening service now lives at bitly.com since Libya controls the .ly top-level domain.
The field of naming, which is one of our areas of expertise, is utterly fascinating. We have created product names for Tesco and Kenwood, and the names Propertymark, Lucideon, HYDRO_BOT, Button & Wilde, Floreon, and Savage & Rose.
If you would like to find out more, come along to the talk I’ll be giving together with trademark lawyer Jandan Aliss, at the Museum of Brands in London’s Notting Hill on Monday, January 20th, 6:30-9pm.In any case, if you would like information about naming your brand, and any other creative branding ideas, please get in touch with me at Madelyn.Postman@leidar.com or ring +44 203 997 1700.
Update: the “Top Take Aways” from the talk are in the video below.