How to come up with a brand name: A step by step guide.

Insight – 17/03/2024

The name of a brand is one of the most important aspects of its identity. It should be memorable, easy to pronounce, and reflective of the company’s values and mission. A strong brand name can help establish trust with customers, set a company apart from competitors, and create a lasting impression. When choosing a name for your brand, it’s important to consider factors such as cultural sensitivity, linguistic implications, and legal availability. A well-chosen brand name can not only attract customers, but also improve the company’s overall reputation and recognition in the marketplace. Take the time to carefully choose a name that accurately represents your brand and its goals, as it can have a significant impact on the success and longevity of your business.

Coming up with the right name for your brand isn’t about fitting a certain ‘standard’. Every brand is unique – don’t pigeon-hole your brand because you think it has to fit an arbitrary standard of what other businesses are doing.

Consider your brand’s position, mission, and story as stepping stones that can lead you to a natural brand name fit. Going back to these basics is a great way to get the creative juices flowing, and might help you land on a few potential name candidates.

And if you need extra help, these 5 tips will help you pick out a brand name that your audience will remember.

Before we dive into the process of naming a brand, we first need to understand what makes a good brand name.

1. Distinctive
In order to be memorable, stand out from the competition, and avoid confusion among your target audiences, a strong brand name must be distinct—especially within your industry.

2. Engaging & memorable
Great names spark the imagination with a magnetic story—think Apple, Nike, and Audi—or through poetic devices like consonance, assonance, and alliteration, a la Javiva.

3. Simple
It should be short enough to use in marketing materials and advertising. Companies with simpler names have higher levels of engagement on social media because you only have a few seconds to capture someone’s attention. A complicated brand name will be an instant turn-off for your audience.

4. Natural sounding
Names should be aurally pleasing and appropriate in the languages of your customers. A portmanteau like Verizon rolls off the tongue, Jamba Juice is delightfully alliterative, and Eska sounds highly refreshing.

5. Appropriate for your brand
Great names authentically express your brand message, positioning, and voice. Samsung, Kia, ASB, and Coke telegraph energy and simplicity. Nature’s Promise is the perfect umbrella name for Ahold’s line of 500+ natural/organic products.


So what is the brand naming process? How can you go from picking brand names out of a hat to an actual strategic brand naming process? And how can your overall brand-building strategy benefit from a brilliant brand name?

Here are five steps to creating a brand name people will love and remember…

1. Define your core identity

Defining a brand’s identity is crucial for building a successful business. Your brand identity is the way you present yourself to the world, and it’s what sets you apart from the competition. To create a strong brand identity, you need to start by defining your mission, values, and goals. Once you have a clear understanding of these key elements, you can develop your brand personality, messaging, and visual identity. Your brand personality should reflect your company’s values and mission, and your messaging should be consistent across all channels. Your visual identity should include a logo, color palette, and typography that are unique and memorable. A strong brand identity will help you connect with customers, build trust and credibility, and ultimately, drive sales.

Your brand name represents what your company stands for, so you’ll need to figure out:

  • Who you are
  • What you want people to think when they encounter your business
  • How you will meet the needs of your customers
  • The vision that your employees buy into

If you don’t know what these needs and values are, or how to meet them, then you can undertake market research to find out. As you begin to articulate your brand, take a long hard look at the following:

  • Brand purpose and brand mission
  • Brand vision
  • Brand personality
  • Brand values


2. Get to know your target market


When creating a brand name, it is important to first identify your target market. This will help you understand your audience’s needs and preferences, and allow you to craft a name that resonates with them. Your brand name should convey your identity, values, and unique selling proposition. Take the time to research your audience, consider their demographics and psychographics, and analyze your competition. Brainstorm potential names and gather feedback from your target audience. Once you have a few strong options, test them out through surveys or focus groups. Remember to choose a name that is easy to remember, pronounce, and spell, and that aligns with your brand’s vision for the future.

Questions to consider include:

  • How do they spend their time

  • Are they younger, older?
  • Do they work full time
  • What might their hobbies include?
  • Do they have kids?

Here is our blog post that covers the process of identifying your target market in detail.

Once you have a good understanding of who your target audience is create a buyer persona. A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer. Creating a buyer persona can help you better understand your target audience, which will in turn help you create more effective marketing campaigns. The first step in creating a buyer persona is to gather demographic information such as age, gender, and occupation. You should also identify the goals, challenges, and pain points that your ideal customer faces. Conducting surveys and interviews with your current customers can help you gather this information. Once you have gathered all necessary information, create a profile that represents your ideal customer. Include a name, background information, and a summary of their goals and challenges. Use this buyer persona to guide your marketing efforts and create more targeted messaging.


3. Brainstorm potential brand names

Brainstorming brand names can be a challenging task. Here are some tips to help you get started:

  • Brainstorm keywords: Gather a list of keywords that describe your brand or its values.
  • Play with words: Experiment with different combinations of words and phrases from your keyword list.
  • Check availability: Before you settle on a name, make sure it’s available as a domain name and on social media.

Remember, a great brand name is short, memorable, and easy to pronounce. Don’t rush the process and be open to feedback from others.

When brainstorming potential brand name, keep the following brand name types in mind:

  • The made-up name.
  • The metaphorical name.
  • The founder’s name
  • The foreign language name
  • The abbreviated name
  • The name with no hidden meaning

4. Make sure your brand name is available

Make sure your brand name is unique and available for use by following these simple steps:

1. Search online: Start by searching for your brand name on search engines like Google and Bing. Check if there are any businesses already using that name or similar variations.

2. Check trademark databases: Visit the websites of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) or World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) to search their trademark databases. This will help you ensure that no one else has trademarked your brand name.

3. Search social media: Look for your brand name on popular social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. This will allow you to see if there are any existing accounts using the name.

4. Conduct a domain name search: Use a domain name registrar such as GoDaddy or Namecheap to search for available domains that match your brand name.

By performing these checks, you can ensure that your brand name is available and avoid potential legal issues down the road.

5. Test your brand name

Testing a new brand name is a crucial step towards branding success. There are several ways to test a new brand name, such as conducting online surveys, focus groups, and A/B testing. Online surveys can help gather quantitative data on the new brand name’s impact on the target audience, while focus groups can provide qualitative insights into how consumers perceive the name. A/B testing involves comparing the new brand name with an existing one to determine which one resonates better with the audience. It is also essential to consider factors such as brand positioning, relevance, and uniqueness while testing a new brand name. By following these guidelines, you can assess the efficacy of your new brand name and make informed decisions based on consumer feedback to help your brand succeed.

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Say Hello!

M. +64 21 1306 713