Make a name for your credit union

by: Shannon Levis

Creating names for companies, products, services, and features is a component of branding most take for granted. Ask someone who’s gone through the process and you’ll hear it’s anything but simple and often rife with issues. Let’s just say, few to no successful names came from an ad hoc group brainstorming over pizza.

To ensure a name is created and protected properly, hire an experienced namer (yeah, it’s a profession) or marketing agency well versed in brand strategy. It is not a project you want to take on yourself… unless you’re naming the business after yourself. Building consensus within your organization is among the toughest parts of the process. There are also trademark implications, linguistic considerations, and design ramifications.

Let’s start with the basics. How would you describe what a good name is? Some clients say short names are best. What about Orville Redenbacher or Thomson Reuters? They’re both successful brands. Others say the name must be unique. How about Delta Airlines, Delta Faucets, and Delta Dental? And many clients declare the name’s got to describe what the product or company does. Really? Google? Virgin? Not descriptive at all.

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