Midterms are fast approaching, and all the candidates have at least one thing in common: they have names, many you haven’t seen before. Can the branch of linguistics that deals with names, onomastics, help us predict election results? That is, do some candidates have advantages simply because of their name? Election research in California, North Dakota, Ohio, […]
Don Norman, design legend and author of The Design of Everyday Things, invited me to speak at UC San Diego Design Lab about how to name innovations. My talk focused on how to create descriptors for innovative products—the part of a name that conveys a product’s category. “Smartphone” and “universal remote” are examples of descriptors. […]
Brand names in the style of “___ and ___” are everywhere. This construction has been around for a while—think Johnson & Johnson, Ben & Jerry’s, Abercrombie & Fitch—but lately you can’t stroll a mall or browse online without running into “and,” “+,” or “&,” particularly in apparel and food and beverage. Big players like Walmart, […]
A few months back, at an overpriced San Francisco juice shop, I met up with a woman interested in becoming a professional namer. After 10+ years in the naming world, I’d had this conversation before. When people hear I’m a namer, their response is often some combination of, “That’s a job?” and “I think I’d […]
“Professional namer.” Yes, it’s a real job. In case you’ve ever been curious what it’s like to do this job, we’ve pulled some of the web’s best articles by and/or about namers and the wonderful, weird world of brand naming.
We’ve identified six common mistakes made in naming, as well as pointers for avoiding them.
Trademarks are a consumer protection mechanism, ensuring that customers don’t mistakenly acquire an item because it bore a confusingly similar mark to another product. This is a twist on the other IP forms, which benefit the items’ creators.
A trademark is a word(s) and/or design(s) that identifies the source of goods or services.
Search online for “what makes a great brand name” and you’ll find plenty of strong opinions. We’ve compiled and organized a list based on articles, agency blog posts, naming guides, and even books about naming. We’ll update this periodically, if new items or sources are found.
How to write a naming brief; a list of what to include
Drawn from a seminal 1976 federal lawsuit, the spectrum of distinctiveness sets out the relative legal strength of various types of marks. Part Two of a two-part series.
Drawn from a seminal 1976 federal lawsuit, the spectrum of distinctiveness sets out the relative legal strength of various types of marks. Part One of a two-part series.
Sound symbolism is the theory that speech sounds have intrinsic meaning.
Namers are increasingly finding that online tools and software—as an augmentation or replacement for offline tools—provide new capabilities and make the more efficient. Here’s a list, which we’ll update periodically, of online tools and software used by professional namers.
A brand name is one or more words used to identify a brand.
Looking to create a new brand name on your own, without hiring an outside consultant or naming firm? Before you dive in, you may want to review one of these free naming guides from some of the best naming firms out there.
Many successful brands started out with domain names that didn’t perfectly match their brand names. Here’s a list, which we’ll update periodically.