How to come up with the best name possible (for sure)
Is it really that important for a new clothing brand to choose the right name? Is it possible?
“It’s just a name.” I’ve heard several times.
As someone who’s started projects from scratch quite a few times, I can guarantee that coming up with a name might seem like something easy, but it’s not.
The name you pick is for life. Sure, technically speaking you can always change it, but rebranding it’s a tedious process at its best and not to mention the fact that if you have to rename the brand then you also have to deal with everything else that’s not going well. After all, nobody changes the identity of a company that’s being successful.
So how can I come up with the best name for my new clothing brand?
For most people, when they venture into this industry with a new line, a name is already in their minds. A name that not only reflects the brand’s personality, but is also catchy — surely the next Jonny Cupcakes.Of course, the name processes all those attributes, but you’re the only one who sees them, for now.
You might like it, you might think it’s a mirror of everything you want to communicate. But how about everyone else? Do you really know what comes to mind when people hear the name? Does it really match the products you’re selling? What kind of emotions does it evoke? Does it have any negative connotations? Any strange imaginary? If you really don’t know, then it’s about time to start doing some research.
The only way to make sure your name works is by testing it. And to do so, we’ve put together an infographic that takes you through the entire process, from selecting different options to alternative exercises to prove if this name is really the best fit.
Start gathering ideas, compare with brands similar to yours, clothing lines you’d like to imitate and write their names down somewhere. It’s also a good idea to scribble a list of all the words that come to your mind when you think about your brand, try to use as many adjectives as you can.
Once you’re done listing different possibilities, it’s time to check if there’s anything wrong with them. Make sure the domain is available and that it doesn’t have any strange secret meaning; check out Google too, is somebody ranking for those words? Can you beat them easily? Don’t forget about the trademark. Make sure the name hasn’t already been registered (trust me, you’d be surprised).
At this point we have a selection of brand names that we know are available on the wild world web and haven’t been trademarked. Which one is the one?
The Human Test
Before you definitively go for it, you need to do one last test. Is your name good for humans? You need to find out.
Head over to the closest bar and ask around. Can they remember it? Pronounce it? Spell it? If they can’t, then it’s probably better to stay away from it. Do not forget about its readability, can people easily distinguish the letters? It’s not the same to be called Momomo than Lillili, now is it? And again, use your common sense. Keep the name short if it’s a word you’re coming up with, the longer it is then the more difficult it will be for people to retain it.
Remember all these things when choosing your brand name, perhaps you won’t come up with the next Zara, but at least you’ll make sure your brand has a name that appeals to people and is easy to remember.
You’re good to go!
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- Says Jeffery Kalmikoff, Former CCO of Threadless.comStart your own clothing company and become the next Mark Ecko, Obey, or Johnny Cupcakes! Learn how to dominate the t-shirt business.