Peak, that's the peak of cliche.
Saturday morning cartoons
Some of these you gotta
know are just like straight up brain dump.
We come up with bad names too.
Hi, I'm Ryan.
So I have six months, $15,000
which is basically a semester of college,
thanks Degreed. To go and learn as much as I can about marketing
and branding and become an expert so the first thing I gotta do
this week is learn how to name things.
I wanna come out of this knowing what goes into making a name and
then come up with a really good name for my company.
I've always been kind of an entrepreneur and so starting my own
businesses the first thing you kinda have to do is come up with
a name I mean obviously concept, but you have to have a name too.
So I think that skill set is really gonna help me long term.
They gave me this book called don't call it that by Eli Altman so
I'm gonna go read this and read a bunch of other resources.
Try and take some different paths learning how to name things,
up with a few names myself.
First i'm gonna go home and see if I made a mistake because I quit
my job but we'll see how it goes.
That's not lying, I quit my job yesterday.
producer: I like that
Let's talk about names,
first my parents
almost named me Denim,
Maybe they were wearing denim vests at the time,
all I know is that
I dodged a denim bullet.
But what's going on in the world does affect baby naming.
Like not so many people are named Katrina after the hurricane hit,
Elsa is much more popular since frozen came out,
and Arya from the Game of Thrones has been big.
Business names also follow trends,
lots of companies are named
after the founder
think McDonald's, Adidas, Ford, JC Penney, Colgate, Tupperware
Tiffany's, Chick fil a,
But you get the point,
sometimes they are named for ingredients,
Coca-Cola for cocaine,
Pepsi for Pepsin, there's naming based on URL availability,
dropping vowels trend
the adding letters trend,
companies rename themselves,
Datsun renamed to Nissan so their
internal product strategy would make more sense.
Remember cingular wireless?
Dropped once they merged with AT&T Google recently introduced a parent
company named Alphabet [COUGH] and you've heard of ISIS,
ISIS, the other one.
The mobile payments company.
They had a PR [BLEEP] storm on their hands and had no choice but
to rename and re-brand.
Then there's socially engineered names like Lululemon maybe you
think their name's a little see through,
Their name was chosen just because the market research showed it
was popular, memorable and easy to say,
it has no other meaning.
Speaking of memorable,
the book Thinking Fast and Slow, has some
interesting stuff about how the mind remembers and associates names.
I talked to the people who ran a study mentioned in the book and
they said that names that are more memorable are more trusted which
With that in mind let's go find out more about names.
So I've given myself a whole two days instead of the week I was
supposed to give myself to come up with a name for my company.
Let's dive into this thing.
A work book for naming your company,
product and brand, a book that
you can write in is kinda cool.
Bad names are your best friend,
I'm gonna come up with a lot
My alarm will be going off in exactly five hours and currently
my list looks like that but I'm gonna try and get at least 30 or 40 solid
names on this list using some of what Eli's taught me,
what my gut tells me and maybe a little Google,
maybe some random
I'll be completely honest,
I thought this was going to be pretty
easy, it's not, it takes some time.
Basically my strategy right now is find any
word that stands out in any sentence in this book and write
I've got a good one.
I've finished the book,
I wish I had about a month to come up with
a name but take this list to Eli.
I'm actually kinda stoked on a couple of these names so I guess
I'll see you guys in the morning.
Supposedly it is a one mile walk
we got to
100 monkeys which is this rad space- I mean they've got like a loft
up above their offices where you can go and hang out and chill
and they've got like cool creative spaces. I'm Ryan. Eli is just
super dry but he's way funny and he's super creative, you can just
tell the guy is just like leaking out creativity.
I started doing my own projects when I was 16 about, once my voice
was deep enough to convince someone that I might be an adult,
was a graphic designer for a little bit,
realized I was a lot better
at this than that.
Everyday we see thousands of brands.
We get really good at being able to tune all that stuff out because
we have to see so much of it.
Throughout a process we're presenting 20 to 30 names,
we have to
come up with 400, 500 maybe names to present those
20 or 30 I better [BLEEP] like every single one of them,
we don't present bad names and we don't present names that we would
be unhappy if our clients picked.
The whole time I'm sitting here I'm thinking oh crap! I'm gonna
have to tell him my names and they are just terrible.
They're not that good.
So I'm just kind of waiting to get beat up.
What I'm gonna do is I've taken my list of names,
don't look at
them, and I'm gonna put them on my forehead. Eli's gonna react to
it and if he likes it he's gonna ring the bell and if he doesn't
like it he's probably gonna not do anything and I'm gonna
So here we go.
Montague what's the story?
I don't know, I just saw it in a book and I just though it was
a cool name.
Okay, so probably not
Transition, not specific
to your industry, kind of something that comes up for anything
so if someone were to see the name it would be really hard to tell
what it is or what you do
Cut and Stitch
Sounds like technical terms within your industry,
What does it mean?
I did the and thing you made fun of earlier,
if you don't know how
is anyone else supposed to know
Going into this we had the plan that Eli's
gonna kick some of these names out so we're gonna get some funny
reactions but when he's actually rejecting your names it's a little
different, it actually hurts.
So what does it have
To do with what you are doing? Nothing. So you're just finding words that you like?
really good sell.
All right we're just gonna need to get rid of all the
ones where you can't make any tangible connection to what you're
It seems like you're under the impression that this
is something like free association.
Yeah, kinda was for a second I was just making a list here.
Oh I kinda like that I mean that sound's - oh I'm supposed to hit this
now? Oh yeah.
[Ding] That's great.
All right we got one.
I like that one.
Yeah this one we were just looking at 1920s boxers and we found
he's the toy bulldog which is cool cuz
he's kinda scrappy, you know,
just a little.
Yeah see how you related it to what you're doing? [Ding]
Yeah see that's why I like I like to be scrappy okay.
Alright, I liked that one,
this yes list is really small.
Okay so hear me out.
Yes, it's post-production but postie bikes are what they use
to deliver mail in Australia.
Pretty rad but then it also has kind of a fun post-production
Ahab's Folley? Popped in my head just sounded awesome,
You know the question I'm gonna ask right?
What's his folly?
No like how does it relate to what you do?
Oh it doesn't
I like these four I think they're interesting names.
My challenge to you is to actually come up with the stories that
would be behind them.
It seems like you have one objective in terms of scrappiness,
not feeling so
neat, and tight, and clean.
I think you need probably two more of those things to play off of,
when you come up with names don't try to check all three boxes
on all of them cuz it's not gonna work but go after them and then
you'll sort of start to see the relationships of like oh okay this
feels a little scrappy but it also ties into some other thing,
not about you but about they type of work you wanna do and how
you want clients to perceive you.
So Eli told me go out,
figure out three things that define you
and how you work.
So I came up with these three things.
So number one, scrappy,
that's just kind of how I work.
Number two, breaking rules- obviously. And three I get lost in the
It's a little bit of ADD mixed with OCD and it creates some magic.
Let's go through these names that we have and kind of talk about
them and see which ones stick.
So first off we've got postie.
Pretty cool name it doesn't quite tell the full story so we're gonna
reject that one.
Scatter, this is one I came up with after and I kinda like it cuz
it's kinda scatter brained
still a little scrappy,
still kinda breaking the rules it's what
you yell when the cops show up and you're doing something illegal
but I still don't think it's a great name.
Alackaday. This one was just a word in a book- not my production company,
this one hurts cuz I really like this one,
there's already a lot
of stuff out there but I do think it fits,
most of it.
So the winner I believe that that we're gonna stick with the new
and improved Toy Bulldog.
I like it because it is scrappy,
he was a boxer and it kinda fits
all of it.
And it's an interesting name it could make for some cool logos and
branding and stuff like that so that's our winner.
The first things I learned about names is it's the first impression.
It's not the logo- I'm not gonna come up to you and say
oh! You know that one coffee brand with the mermaid girl,
gonna say Starbucks.
Number two the name has to have a backstory,
without a backstory
it's just a word, in order to build a brand that name has to mean
something, and so that's the big take away I took especially
with Eli, he rejected a lot of my names because they didn't mean
anything, they were just words on a paper.
The third thing is to avoid the trends,
you don't want your company
to sound like every other sheep,
you don't want to stick with the
thing that's the status quo right then
A lot of the hipster
brands use the and technique,
they'll pull words and throw and
on there, you don't necessarily wanna do that anymore, but I think yeah
avoid the trends to make sure that you stand out and that your business
is different than anything else out there.
And that is why you go into business right? Cause' you offer something else,
so you don't wanna sound like everybody else.
Alright so I had $15,000
to start I bought a book, a pen, the
flight to San Francisco,
the Uber ride but we got some free advice,
the breakfast, great chicken and waffles,
Brown Sugar Kitchen in
Oakland you should check them out.
I gave the five stars on Yelp.
But what you're not seeing here is the interview I got to do with
Eli, sometimes the best thing you can do is to interview a mentor
And they'll usually do it for free or at least for lunch.
I'm probably not gonna name anything else though so don't ask me to do
that for a while, hurt my brain and we're done,
Next week on Ryan learns something,
I learn how to do voice overs
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