Going on the Offense

An edgy name can be highly effective at getting attention and sticking in a customer’s mind. But invariably, someone is going to complain about the name. That’s the nature of edge—it’s controversial. And these days, social media gives everyone a...
Navigating Your Way to an Available Trademark

Navigating Your Way to an Available Trademark

When you’re thinking about naming your company, what’s on your Must-Have list? Common English word. Memorable. Connected to your brand promise, differentiator or offering. Easy to pronounce and spell. Short. Available for trademark. Seems reasonable—until...

Smarter Cars, Dumber Names

In Henry Ford’s day, brakes were brakes, and a steering wheel was a steering wheel. But not anymore. Now auto makers want their proprietary technology to seem superior to their competitors’, so they give it a brand name instead of labeling it generically....

When Rebranding Goes Wrong

Ad Age released its list of “11 Worst Name Changes of 2018,” many of which were attempts to correct an original name that was poorly conceived. Other companies jumped on the “shorter is better” bandwagon, proving once again that character count...

Naming Mary Jane

The cannabis industry has had to clean up its intellectual property act now that it’s a legitimate product in some states. No, you can’t call a strain of marijuana “Gorilla Glue” or “Girl Scout Cookies” or “Skywalker...