The 14 step cycle of naming your business or blog

by Ginger on March 15, 2010

in Blogging & Social Media, The 9-5

So, as I mentioned on Friday, I’m working on a new venture for myself. And I’m super excited, and have lots of ideas and plans and so on and so forth. But the thing that’s been tripping me up thus far is naming the damn thing. So I present to you the cycle of naming your small business (works for blogs too):

  1. Decide to go with generic name–something like ” Your Name Consulting” or “Your Name Design”
  2. Think that’s not big/grand/interesting/memorable enough
  3. Start brainstorming words that relate to your new business. Break out the handy thesaurus (or
  4. Find a word/phrase that SPEAKS to  you–that’s it! You’ve got it!
  5. Do a google search and/or a domain name search for the name
  6. Find that 12 other businesses have STOLEN your name! Bastards.
  7. Try to figure out how you can modify your original idea, while retaining the ease and feel of the original.
  8. Realize that your only options include misspelling words (ala Classy with a K), adding about 5 additional (unnecessary) words, or mashing words together. This goes against every fiber in your being.
  9. Give up on your “perfect name”. Back to the drawing board.
  10. Flirt with the idea of a single, unrelated word. Hey, Yahoo did it. Google did it. Why can’t you?
  11. Realize you are not Yahoo or Google.
  12. Go back to idea of generic name–something like ” Your Name Consulting” or “Your Name Design”
  13. Repeat steps 2-11.
  14. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

As always, more lists can be found over at Anna’s at abdpbt!

Katherine March 15, 2010 at 10:29 am

Your name maketing also can’t be trademarked if you ever got to that point.

Are you looking to go Fanciful, Arbitrary or Suggestive?

abdpbt March 15, 2010 at 11:22 am

This sounds familiar. If the last step is “name it something nobody can remember or understand.”

Ginger March 15, 2010 at 11:48 am

Good point regarding trademark Ms. Katherine. Not that I think I’d ever get to that point, but you never know.

And I think, given what I’m trying to do and the market I’m going after, I’m looking for some combination of Fanciful and Suggestive, without being gag inducing. (For example, N.C. suggested GingerSnaps, with the tagline: “Ginger Snaps… and it gets done.” I pretty much threw a shoe at him for being so cheesy & eyeroll inducing).

Ginger March 15, 2010 at 11:52 am

abdpbt, yeah, you seem to have chosen to fight an uphill battle with your name. I remember it, but I’ve been reading you since almost the beginning, so I’ve got a bit of an advantage. Though I’d hate to have to say it outloud too often.

Nilsa @ SoMi Speaks March 15, 2010 at 11:59 am

But, wait! You forgot some…

100) Take a couple words that have meaning to you (in my case, South Michigan Avenue was the street I lived on when I met Sweets)

101) Take the first few letters from each word and mash together (in my case, SoMi)

102) Use this catchy, new, memorable word as part of a bigger phrase that people will remember (SoMi Speaks!).


theotherStacy March 16, 2010 at 9:19 am

or ‘try on’ 3-8 different ones til you’re exhausted and end up with the simplest one.

Ginger March 16, 2010 at 12:44 pm

So THAT’S where the SoMi came from. I’ve wondered (but never asked).

Ginger March 16, 2010 at 12:44 pm

That’s probably what I’ll end up doing. I tend to overthink things until I’m exhausted and then just choose the default option in the end.

Lys March 17, 2010 at 11:00 am

haha, this is ridiculously true. also applies to gmail names. dammit, i can’t get my real first and last name OR my real first and fiance’s last name on gmail no matter how hard i try. i’m a huge stickler for names, i might have to dig up something on the people who stole both my names and blackmail them.

Her March 17, 2010 at 8:31 pm

This is EXACTLY what we went through trying to name my photography business. I settled on using my own name, because I wasn’t sure how the business would evolve over the years, and I am glad I did now.

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