Analytically-based, in-depth concept development, with accompanying strategies and research directions, for product and firm names, slogans, taglines, and anywhere that a key concept must be communicated in a few words.
A broad professional experience with language, supplemented by trained analytical ability and experience with identity-oriented graphic communications, enables me to originate names and naming strategies that are both creative and effective. Rigorous attention is paid to concept, connotations, aesthetics, graphic application, and also to the nuts-and-bolts linguistic factors that are the final test of a name’s suitability. I use no canned methods, such as name-generating software or thesaurus dumps—there will be a reason for every name proposed. Slogans and key phrases can be developed in the same manner.
Name development will proceed on the basis of information from briefings and consultations, supplemented as needed with category audits (e.g., retail audits or research in trade publications or public media). The name-development process itself will involve a systematic analysis of possible directions and strategies, limitations and pitfalls. This analysis accounts for many more factors than common copywriting or creative approaches, even in the early stages of the process. Thus I am better able to solve difficult naming problems, and can provide a broader choice of viable names, leaving fewer unsuitable ones to be weeded out at later stages. The number of names provided, and the amount and depth of the commentary and analysis, will be determined by the nature of the assignment and the time and budget allotted.
I am not equipped for due-diligence trademark searches, but a basic Web search will be used to weed out names already in conflicting use. This means I can deliver a higher proportion of legally available names, and makes development more efficient by reducing the time spent exploring names with conflicts. (It also provides a further check on a name’s connotations.)
Naming is getting tougher. With everything now being branded and trademarked, business is literally running out of names. This is why firm and product names are getting stranger and sillier. An in-depth approach to naming can help avoid such mistakes, and make the most of the available possibilities. It can also provide a basis for going out of the box, to develop alternate solutions such as naming systems that leverage existing brands.
See the Editorial section of my portfolio for an extract from a naming project.