A brand name is one of the brand elements which helps the customers to identify and differentiate one product from another. It should be chosen very carefully as it captures the key theme of a product in an efficient and economical manner. It can easily be noticed and its meaning can be stored and triggered in the memory instantly. Choice of a brand name requires a lot of research. Brand names are not necessarily associated with the product. For instance, brand names can be based on places (Air India, British Airways, Kenya), animals or birds (Dove soap, Puma), people (Louise Phillips, Allen Solly). In some instances, the company name is used for all products (General Electric, LG).
Features of a Good Brand Name
A good brand name should have the following characteristics:
- It should be unique/distinctive (for instance- Kodak, Mustang)
- It should be extendable.
- It should be easy to pronounce, identified and memorized. (For instance-Tide)
- It should give an idea of the product’s qualities and benefits (For instance- Swift, Quickfix, Lifeguard).
- It should be easily convertible into foreign languages.
- It should be capable of legal protection and registration.
- It should suggest product/service category (For instance Newsweek).
- It should indicate concrete qualities (For instance Firebird).
- It should not portray bad/wrong meanings in other categories. (For instance, NOVA is a poor name for a car to be sold in Spanish country because in Spanish it means “doesn’t go”).
The process of Selecting a renowned and successful Brand Name
- Define the objectives of branding in terms of six criterions – descriptive, suggestive, compound, classical, arbitrary and fanciful. It is essential to recognize the role of the brand within the corporate branding strategy and the relation of the brand to other brand and products. It is also essential to understand the role of brand within the entire marketing program as well as a detailed description of the niche market must be considered.
- Generation of multiple names – Any potential source of names can be used; organization, management and employees, current or potential customers, agencies and professional consultants.
- Screening of names on the basis of branding objectives and marketing considerations so as to have a more synchronized list – The brand names must not have connotations, should be easily pronounceable, should meet the legal requirements etc.
- Gathering more extensive details on each of the finalized names – There should be extensive international legal search done. These searches are at times done on a sequential basis because of the expense involved.
- Conducting consumer research – Consumer research is often conducted so as to confirm management expectations as to the remembrance and meaningfulness of the brand names. The features of the product, its price and promotion may be shown to the consumers so that they understand the purpose of the brand name and the manner in which it will be used. Consumers can be shown actual 3-D packages as well as animated advertising or boards. Several samples of consumers must be surveyed depending on the niche market involved.
- On the basis of the above steps, management can finalize the brand name that maximizes the organization’s branding and marketing objectives and then formally register the brand name.
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