Repeatedly we encounter clients who have attempted name development through crowdsourcing sites, in-house teams, or advertising and design agencies. While these approaches can sometimes work, more often than not they result in names that are mediocre, legally indefensible, or both. Many things account for this less than desirable outcome.
More Than Scrabble
Non-professionals namers are often considered “good with words”. However, individuals at naming agencies aren’t just “good with words”. They are extremely good with words. They understand linguistics and how different word and phonetic structures impact consumer perception.
They know that names be easy to pronounce and must avoid inappropriate meanings in multiple languages, including street language. Armed with an encyclopedic knowledge of past and present brand names, naming professionals are experts at developing names that avoid the overly trendy. This is extremely critical. Packaging and promotions may come and go, but brand names must have staying power.
Naming agencies also spend a lot of time getting to know their clients. Just as good biographers thoroughly research their subjects before writing, the pros at naming agencies gather in-depth information prior to any naming. This information—ranging from brand personality and competition, to naming objectives and linguistic criteria—gets codified into a “naming brief,” a document that guides the naming process. But because brief development is time consuming, crowdsourcing sites, and even ad and design agencies who should know better, skip or skimp on this important step.
Naming agencies are fully versed in trademark issues. This knowledge enables them to develop long lists of names that stand a better than average chance of getting through trademark. Non-professional namers don’t possess this knowledge. In fact, most aren’t familiar with trademark issues at all. The result? Long lists of names that infringe on existing marks. If used, these types of names can cost clients dearly in terms of re-branding and legal fees.
Professional Naming is a Great Value
The best way to get a name that is expressive of your brand, withstands the test of time, and doesn’t invite ‘cease and desist’ letters from lawyers, is to work with a professional naming agency. Yes, it might cost more, but in the end, it is one of the best business investments you can make.