As my hairstylist worked on creating a new look for me, he chirped, “I’m starting my own salon very soon’. I congratulated him and asked the name of the salon. He blurted two to three names, “I’m planning to go for The Bliss Look, The New You or maybe Dhir’s Salon”. I can’t stop myself from sharing ‘gyan’ when it comes to branding. So there I was trying to help him understand how a name works in branding. I went on, “What you need to know is that your brand name reflects your persona, what the product or service is, and it should be able to speak for itself what it is all about”.
I added, “What do you think makes a great brand name”? He chuckled, “What’s in a name? Anything can catch one’s fancy and if luck favours, it’ll click getting you recognition overnight”.
However, I don’t think so. A name has a lot to do in branding and of course, nothing beats your marketing and execution. And yes, it begins with the brand name.
So, I went on to share how he could craft his brand name.
1. Types of names
Your brand name can either be relevant or irrelevant to your product; it can be descriptive in nature or simply associate with the product in a certain way. There is nothing wrong selecting any type of name. But what is important is what image your product wants to convey.
But when it comes to informational products, it’s always best to use descriptive names to help buyers make a quick decision. A relevant meaningful name will always try to bring out the essence of the brand. For instance, it is ideal to keep a relevant name for a course or service you offer. A few such names are Fiji Water, General Motors, Volkswagen (People’s Car in German), Toys R Us, etc.
Your objective behind the product will help you a great deal in choosing what kind of name you require.
2. Unique Yet Memorable
Brainstorm for a name that is unique yet easy to remember. It’s easy to remember a name when it is catchy and is simple to spell.
But with the increasing number of companies and brands, you are likely to bump across similar names. So the trick is to create something new. Add a suffix or a prefix to a word, tweak an original word, change spellings, use an acronym, or simply add two words to create a new one. Simple, isn’t it? Here are a few examples -Kodak, Cisco (short for San Francisco), Lego (a combination of the Danish phrase leg godt, which means to “play well”).
3. Emotional Quotient
Your brand name should touch the right cords. It should be able to evoke some emotions among the audience. It could be beauty, innocence, empowerment, strength, faith and so on. It is all about the feeling you want your product to arouse in your customers.
For instance, if your product is all about entertainment, try to instil the element of fun into the name. For example MTV – Stay Raw, Honda – Power of Dreams, Coca Cola – Choose Happiness.
At the end of the day, your purpose is to stay true to your brand identity, its belief, and tone. Know what you wish to project and take the plunge. But remember your brand name either needs to challenge, generate some kind of feeling, or tell a new story. That’s because you cannot afford to blend in the crowd if you wish to face the competition.
4. Shaping of a Futuristic Brand Name
Be wise when zeroing in on a name because once you name a product, the product and the name gets imprinted creating your brand recognition. The name you select will stay there for as long as your product or brand. A futuristic name sets you ready for the future, which may bring in changes, growth, or success. Such names promise sustainability and generate possibilities.
For instance, if you plan to have new products and plan to go global then the brand name has to be futuristic.
However, often it takes time for a brand name to catch up with the customers. It takes time and effort for the name to evolve into a brand. Though the name is only a small fragment of branding, many other aspects come into play in giving the name the significance it holds.
5. Picturesque, Positive, and Protectable
The visual aspect of a brand name is important. When creating your brand name, be aware so that the name can be graphically presented in a logo, in text as well as brand architecture. At the same time, the name must be optimistic enough to give the audience a positive feel.
Once the ideal name strikes, check if a domain is available and if you can own and trademark the name.
My hair stylist thoughtful and contemplative by now, looked at me quizzically. I knew what he wanted so I told him, “Don’t worry, I’ll work on your new brand name. Leave it up to me”. As though relieved, he set my hair, brushed my flicks, and showed me my new haircut in the mirror with a big happy smile.
If you too need help in naming your brand, we are just a call away!