What's in a name?

Even if you’re not a Shakespeare fan, you’ve probably heard the line from Romeo and Juliet: “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose would by any other name smell as sweet.” True as far as it goes, but there’s a lot more to it. A rose by any other name might look the same, feel the same, smell the same … but people may well feel and act differently because of the name, not the reality. Just ask any Capulet how they feel about the Montagues.

Names do have the potential to influence perceptions, thanks to a wide variety of factors ranging from word associations and cultural preconceptions to phonetic qualities and even simple aesthetics. Different names aren’t just different; they’re subjectively better or worse.

For example, Cary Grant was born Archibald Leach — would his career have followed the same trajectory under either name? We may never know, but we can say for certain that the toothfish was an undesirable, ugly, oily, arctic bottom-dweller until restaurants started calling it Chilean Sea Bass — now it’s fifty dollars a pound. Google was nearly named BackRub — somehow the phrase “Let me BackRub that for you” just doesn’t seem as compelling.

It has been our great privilege to help many of our trusted clients define themselves and/or their products and services with just the right brand name. Over the years, we’ve developed an approach that’s proven effective time after time.

We begin by thoroughly exploring the subject. We organize discovery sessions to gather information and advance our understanding. We identify key attributes that describe and define the brand-to-be, and use these to suggest broad themes that might point to a meaningful, memorable name. Our creative teams consider and discard thousands of possibilities in the search for just a few distinctive options that fit each theme. We run general trademark and Internet searches to ensure validity before testing the names against the client’s sensibilities — sometimes the right choice stands out immediately, sometimes we have to repeat the exercise several times before arriving at the solution.

The name is just the beginning, the foundation on which we can build an entire brand, covering the logo, color palette, typography, brand attributes and positioning statement, tone and voice, document templates, and so forth. These form the basis for corporate stationery, websites, sales collateral, and much, much more.

What’s in a name? Character and personality. History and promise. Success or failure. What do you want it to be?

Source: www.folger.edu

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Adcetera is a 35-year-old, Houston-based advertising agency made up of the most strategic, most creative people on the planet. Our nearly 90-member team of designers, writers, programmers, animators, strategists, and account service people work like dogs to create memorable content for brands around the world.

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We work with some of the biggest brands on some of their biggest projects (AIG, DOW, HP, HPE, and Sysco) as well as some of the best brands headquartered in our own backyard (Texas Children’s Hospital, High Fashion Home, and Memorial Hermann). Many of our relationships — with our employees and our clients — span decades. We are blessed and we are proud — proud of the work we do and the brands for whom we speak. If what is important to us is important to you, let’s start a conversation. Call or drop in. Our doors are open and our phones are on.