Start With the Right Brand Name (734 words)
Cottineau's firm came up with the household name Prozac, coined from 'pro' for professional and proactive and 'zac' for the ability of the medication to target exactly the area needing treatment.
"The beauty of emotional-benefit branding is that the names are often more readily available from a trademark standpoint because they break out of the expected category language," Cottineau attests. "It helps brands fill the role of lifestyle destinations vs. mere one-off products."
A proper name allows you to put a face on the brand, standing behind a brand's promise, adding authenticity. Cottineau says, "Martha, Oprah: they're very big non-fabricated brands. When you have that [authenticity], it's terrific to use personal names—assuming people can pronounce them and they don't mean 'your mother wears army boots' in a foreign language." Interbrand does linguistic checks on potential names to avoid these costly international embarrassments.
A Name and Also an Omen
Noosh, a provider of online print-buying and selling communications, came from the founder and chairman's, Ofer Ben-Shachar, nickname for his sister-in-law. Noosh is a term of affection in Hebrew. And it gets attention because of its uniqueness in the brand landscape.
Nomen atque omen is a Latin phrase meaning "a name and also an omen." If Cottineau is right, you may start seeing more brand names from ancient languages
In lieu of the emphasis on speed and convenience prevalent in the past decade, Cottineau says, "Prefixes communicating personalization like 'my' and 'I' will become widely used." She says the e- and i-fatigue have set in and will only get worse. "Longer term … conducting business on the Internet will become such a commonplace occurrence that we might just need an abbreviation to indicate those increasingly rare businesses that insist on remaining unwired," she says.
Other trends: nostalgic names (i.e. Front Porch Lemonade) over punchy, abbreviated ones; names that speak to a younger, more diverse population; celestial, mythological and even explorer names; and longish phrases as brand names. "Remember the shampoo Gee Your Hair Smells Terrific? Get ready for more of those," warns Cottineau.