Naming Tip #3: Choose the right naming firm

By Mark Skoultchi

July 7, 2008

Some people assume that all naming firms are basically the same. And, that evaluating any two naming firms is as simple as comparing one fresh apple to another. While similarities may exist, naming firms are not all created equal. And while budgets vary among firms, money shouldn’t be the only factor you consider when choosing a naming firm. Selecting a firm without the proper experience or a smart creative perspective can cause more problems (and cost more money) in the long run.

A good naming firm should be able to articulate its creative process clearly, and should also have a solid system in place for vetting names. The firm you select also needs to have an innate sense of what makes a name perfect for you and your target audience. Some firms will push a particular naming style on all of their clients. Naming firms with an intelligent creative process will listen carefully, learn about your unique project, and present a range of relevant names and styles for you to choose from.

Some questions you might consider asking potential naming firms include:

  • Does the naming firm have a dedicated creative staff or do they rely primarily on freelancers?
  • Do they have the necessary experience in the naming industry to fully understand the complexities involved with naming specific projects?
  • Does the naming firm have a proven intelligent, creative process that yields successful results for diverse clientele?
  • Does their portfolio contain a mixture of different industries, clients, styles, and creative directions?
  • Do they understand the complex challenges of legally clearing a trademark?
  • Does the firm have a solid understanding of linguistics? And, do they have the ability to effectively test names in global markets for linguistic and cultural appropriateness?
  • Do you have a good personality match with the people at the naming firm? Do they seem like they will be responsive, thoughtful, and fun to work with?

This is part three in a ten-part CatchThis series. Check back every Monday morning for subsequent naming tips. Check out previous Naming Tips here.

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