The Name Development Process
Whether re-naming, naming a company or a product or service, we use the same airtight four-phase process to support and advance strategic brand objectives.
We build a deep understanding of the brand strategy through our own in-depth research, interviews, and immersion in any existing brand research. Discovery aims to crystallize the naming challenges and opportunities from the start: ways to differentiate from the competition, themes that motivate consumer interest, core truths about the parent brand.
During the Planning phase, we engage all key decision makers to synthesize observations from the Discovery phase, discuss the naming approach and build alignment around well-defined strategic naming priorities and decisioning criteria. It ensures that names will be created and evaluated with constant attention to their unique opportunity to support the namescape and advance the brand.
During Creation, we bring the strategic plan to life in new name candidates. We engage a team of namers custom selected to each project and assess creative concepts through a series of filters until our final recommendations are presented to the client team – with accompanying rationale, visual and verbal contextualizations that display each candidate’s success in delivering against the decisioning criteria.
Names pass through four evaluative measures during the Creation phase:
- TM SCREENING
All presented name candidates are pre-screened for domestic and/or international TM availability, delivering confidence that each name is ownable.
- LINGUISTIC ANALYSIS
With the expertise of native-speaking linguists across the globe, we screen all name candidates to control for any negative associations, and ensure linguistic viability in any markets where the name will live.
- CONTEXTUAL EVALUATION
assess names’ performance in the myriad ways they will ultimately live in their market context, accounting for nicknames, mispronunciations, abbreviations and all other colloquial mishaps.
- DIGITAL VIABILITY ASSESSMENT
We assess names’ strengths with specific regard to search engines, social media, and URL availability – providing URL recommendations and eliminating candidates that pose issues in an internet world.
During this phase, we once again recall the decisioning criteria developed in the Planning phase, and obsessed over in the Creation phase, and use it as the sole basis on which to guide the evaluation of candidates and selection of the final name. We create project-customized decisioning tools to synthesize, contextualize, and prioritize brand leaders’ feedback against the criteria, channeling visionary insights into concise conclusions – into final name selection. CMOs therefore base decisions on strategy – never pure preference. And the consultation we provide clarifies the process and emboldens the culture towards naming within our clients’ organizations that’s needed to select great names.