If you have ever been stumped on brand or company names, Igor, a branding company has created an amazing model to help you solve the problem. They teach you how to break down a name into the sum of its parts— the parts that matter.
Taken From Igor Naming Guide:
Appearance – Simply how the name looks as a visual signifier, in a logo, an ad, on a
billboard, etc. The name will always be seen in context, but it will be seen, so looks are
Distinctive – How differentiated is a given name from its competition. Being distinctive
is only one element that goes into making a name memorable, but it is a required
element, since if a name is not distinct from a sea of similar names it will not be
memorable. It’s important, when judging distinctiveness, to always consider the name in
the context of the product it will serve, and among the competition it will spar with for the
Depth – Layer upon layer of meaning and association. Names with great depth never
reveal all they have to offer all at once, but keep surprising you with new ideas.
Energy – How vital and full of life is the name? Does it have buzz? Can it carry an ad
campaign on its shoulders? Is it a force to be reckoned with? These are all aspects of a
name’s energy level.
Humanity – A measure of a name’s warmth, its “humanness,” as opposed to names
that are cold, clinical, unemotional. Another – though not foolproof – way to think about
this category is to imagine each of the names as a nickname for one of your children.
Positioning – How relevant the name is to the positioning of the product or company
being named, the service offered, or to the industry served. Further, how many relevant
messages does the name map to?
Sound – Again, while always existing in a context of some sort or another, the name
WILL be heard, in radio or television commercials, being presented at a trade show, or
simply being discussed in a cocktail party conversation. Sound is twofold – not only how
a name sounds, but how easily it is spoken by those who matter most: the potential
customer. Word of mouth is a big part of the marketing of a company, product or service building the
with a great name, but if people aren’t comfortable saying the name, the word won’t get
“33” – The force of brand magic, and the word-of-mouth buzz that a name is likely to
generate. Refers to the mysterious “33” printed on the back of Rolling Rock beer bottles
from decades that everybody talks about because nobody is really sure what it means.
“33” is that certain something that makes people lean forward and want to learn more
about a brand, and to want to share the brand with others. The “33” angle is different for
Trademark – As in the ugly, meat hook reality of trademark availability. Scoring is easy
here, as there are only three options, and nothing is subjective: 10 = likely available for
trademark; 5 = may be available for trademark; and 0 = not likely available for
trademark. All of the names on this list have been prescreened by a trademarked
attorney and have been deemed “likely” for trademark registration.