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Naming by Munich based branding and trademark expert

What can my name agency do for you?

Our core business is finding and creating brand names. Individual brand names with a lasting value and true future potential. And as every product and company is unique and special, it's not about "one size fits all", but "made to measure is king". No name whatsoever can, will, or should, fulfill all possible criteria.

In addition to name development, I offer you a very focused selection of closely related services:
  • Brand name systems and name structures for portfolios
  • Descriptors, subbrands and category markers 
  • Slogans and tag lines, creation as well as adaptation
  • Checks for linguistic and cultural compatibility
  • Name tests, qualitative as well as quantitative
  • Trademark research, in cooperation with partners
We offer you quality, creativity, and dependability. And lots of added value.

My way of branding and my services

As a specialist, my core competence is naming: product, service, and corporate names. Descriptive as well as trademarkable - but always remarkable.

It is not enough to just come up with a fancy idea. This is also important, but it is only a part of an elaborate process that touches on many fields. When creating and selecting names, a score of criteria needs to be considered:

  • Is the name applicable in all relevant markets?
  • Does the name fit with the product's or company's strategy?
  • What kind of marketing concept can you build on the name?
  • How is the pronunciation of the name judged by the target group?
  • What is the trademark situation like?
  • What kind of trademark protection do you aim at?

Therefore, I work according to a three-step methodology: design, create, and filter. This approach is not revolutionary, but it is very effective - and it is tried and tested.

  • In the first step - together we clarify your objectives and specifications.
  • In the second step - we develop names, many names; often in close cooperation with our partner network.
  • In the third step - all the names created are filtered according to the initially defined requirements with regard to content and brand properties.

At the end of this process, only very few candidates remain. And in the end, you see the difference:

Naming Projects

Name systems provide logic and efficiency for brands

The general objective of a name system is a clear product or portfolio structure that reflects a systematically organized product portfolio. As a consequence, you can gain improved awareness and easy assignment, e.g. from products to product groups or a brand. Of course, this can also distinguish you from your competitors and alleviate future naming tasks.
Before you can reap what you have sown, you have to plow, however. You must analyze the properties and differences of your portfolio to be named, you have to group all fitting units, you must develop strategies and names and so forth. In the end, you can enjoy a logical system.

Overall, this is a complicated process, during design and creation as well as during implementation and deployment. And, of course, there is a limitation: In the future, you have a limited range of potential new names - if you stick to your system. Whether a name system is the right solution for you, depends on a score of criteria, like:
  • Can you form well-defined product groups / segments?
  • Are you really willing to perform a complicated conversion process?
  • Can a new name system in the company actually be introduced?

Projects and references related to name systems

For more than ten years have I run naming and branding projects in a variety of industries. The following projects are especially interesting concerning the topic "name systems":

  • IVU – Creation of a logical name system inclusive of portfolio analysis and brand review for a software company.
  • Recaro Child Safety – Design of two systems of linguistically related names for booster seats as well as strollers.
  • WMF – Branding of a business unit plus founding of a future-proof name system for the worldwide leader in enterprise coffee makers.
You would like to know more about a project? Feel free to check out further references or simply get in touch with me.

Systematic naming via name system

Naming advice, tests, research, analyses and expert opinions

There are many agencies specialized in brand consulting. Our approach is different. We focus on brand names and the relationship between names and brands. What this means for you is: Whenever it comes to decisions related to a name, be it for a new product, a website, the building of a new brand, or the merger of two companies - we are your partner (also for expert opinions and recommendations). Perhaps you find yourself in one of the following situations:

  • "There are several names we must pick from, but we cannot agree upon one."
  • "Are there any other feasible ways, or is a renaming inevitable?"
  • "There are too many names in our portfolio. Which ones should we dump?"
  • "Which one of several names has the potential to grow an umbrella brand from it?"
  • "How can we devise future guidelines for name introductions?"
  • "How can we make sure that in the future, only brand compliant names are released ?"
For these and related cases, simply get in touch with a name pro. Together with you, we will find a solution that helps you reach your goals with the most rational use of resources.

For more than fifteen years, I have managed name creation and related consulting projects in manifold branches – from software companies to insurances, from carmakers to med tech. I would like to highlight the following projects and clients specifically: 
  • Bora – Evaluation of intended line names for the kitchen appliance specialist
  • Frau + Mutter / kfd – Brand analysis, title development, marketing conceptualization
  • Testo – Analysis of brand values of the portable measuring devices market leader
In the list on the portfolio page, you find a wider selection of branding projects.

Naming Consulting

When you change a name: rebranding + renaming

Often, the changing of a name does not really make sense, is not definitely required, or simply makes brand equity vanish. But there are situations where a renaming is actually unavoidable and does make sense. Then the time has come for a thorough rebranding or renaming:
  • You are not allowed to continue using a name
  • A company spin-off is sold or gets listed on the stock exchange and may not simply continue to use the umbrella name (as is conveniently the case with Siemens Energy, for example)
  • A merger / acquisition in which no company can appear must appear as the weaker part
  • A name is unsuitable and even a hindrance to access new foreign markets
  • An existing name is so bad / long / misleading / not helpful that renaming or rebranding makes sense
  • And for sure, there are some more reasons
Important: When time is crucial, you have to concentrate and work without errors. Finding a name works as described above - but in this kind of project there is more to it:
  • Reflect precisely on the new identity in contrast to the previous one(s)
  • Take the employees with you, integrate them and explain stuff
With the experience from a score of projects (including works for 3m5., Haufe, VKB, Sinterwerke Grenchen, Vitos, WMF) I know effective solutions name changes. Because the most beautiful name is of no use if its acceptance is zero. So I support you with:
  • The know-how to involve the right employees at the right time
  • Advice on practical and communicative implementation
  • Support and advice on integration measures
  • Practical employee workshops
Symbols of renaming and rebranding

Trademarks in China - transliteration and adaptation

You might ask: "Can I use my name or my brand in the Chinese market successfully, or do I have to make adjustments beforehand?" Along with my Chinese partner agency, I clear all questions for you and find the right solutions. We offer the following services for the Chinese market: Chinese sign illustration
  • Acceptance tests for existing brand names
  • Market research for products or product innovations
  • Transfer of names into Chinese characters - transliteration and transcription
  • Adaptations and testing of names for further Asian markets
Our partner is the leading China-born brand consultancy. Their offer includes market and consumer research, brand strategy and creative services. The customers served include Givaudan, Unilever, Volkswagen, Chanel, or BASF.

Way of working and philosophy

If you have any questions, I will gladly answer them. You can get in touch with us by mail or phone. However, here you can already find some answers to common questions.

Q: What is a good name?
A: Good question. A general answer is impossible. A good name is operational in the relevant markets and produces the correct, i.e. intended effects. There is no general-purpose perfect name, but there is always a best one for each particular purpose. And this one will pay off.

Q: How important is a name?
A: You can hardly overestimate the choice of the right name as the name has far-reaching consequences for design, communication and so forth - concerning products as well as companies. However, one must be honest: not every project actually deserves to receive a name.

Q: Is it a good idea to develop a name, even if the product does not exist yet?
A: This is exactly the right way to do it. The name will influence all the steps that follow, e.g. communication strategy and media content. However, what you should have, is a clear strategy with a clean positioning. Based on that, the name can be developed smoothly. 

Q: What is the advantage of a lucid name strategy for a portfolio?
A: At first, a clear and comprehensive name system requires more efforts than just developing one single brand. In the long term, however, it pays off by increased efficiency and accelerated name development. A solid foundation is so much easier to build on. Read more about name systems.

Q: Is there a silver bullet, e.g. invented names, or a special formula?
A: No. As mentioned, each project is unique. In one case, an invented name may be the best solution, in a different one this is a classic, evocative name. In my opinion, one cannot claim any standard rules concerning the desired name without detailed knowledge of the related venture. Therefore, any kind of formula for creation or evaluation is void.

Q: Can you also help us if we “only” need descriptive terms?
A: Even with "only" descriptive labels, the right name choice is crucial. Interestingly, the introduction of innovative descriptive names opens very charming opportunities, such as setting new product categories - while at the same time accentuating an innovative character. This is one of my favorite tasks.

Q: Why should one consult a naming specialist?
A: Naming is a very specialized field within branding that extends far beyond the invention of new names. My experience and my methodical, proven approach guarantee the highest degree of accuracy. A score of filters in the development process secures that you get strong, good names.

Q: How much time should we budget until a name can actually be used?
A: To develop a customized name requires up to eight weeks of intense project work. Until you hold a legally protected trademark in your hands, you should reserve six months at the least, depending on your markets. Contact me for an appraisal of your individual case.

Q: Where do you work, will you visit us?
A: The majority of my clients are based in Germany and Austria. However, I have also tended to customers from Northern Italy, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, and Switzerland. So time is rather a limiting factor than distance.

Q: Can you just analyze our names?
A: Of course, I will gladly check and evaluate name proposals that have originated from within your team. Criteria are manifold and include phonetics, etymology, semantics, concept-fit, futureproofness ... This is part of my offer in name consulting.

Q: Should a new name be tested?
A: Market research and name tests, qualitative as well as quantitative, can make sense, but only if adapted carefully and applied with a good sense of proportion. 

Q: Do you also design pharma names?
A: Yes, we do. Rx as well as OTC.  

Q: Is the effort you make to create a name not actually disproportionately large?
A: If you manage to find a great name by chance, definitely. In all other cases: no. In view of the far-reaching consequences of a name for communication and design of a product or a company, the proper choice of a name can hardly be overestimated.

Q: Can you help us if we want to approach the Chinese market?
A: We can also offer support concerning all Chinese brand issues via our chosen partner in China.

Q: Why don't you offer a name generator?
A: There are already enough automated name generators out there. My projects are based on in-depth understanding, challenging and enriching exchange and work on detail so that the most suitable name for your project is actually found. Very different from a name machine.

Q: How can we be sure that you will find a name that we are happy with?
A: With the help of our tried and tested Neobrand® method, verifiable controlling elements are integrated into each name project. A multiple target-performance comparison ensures that - to put it bluntly - the end result is what we were looking for at the beginning.

Q: Do you give a guarantee that a name is legally safe?
A: No. And for good reasons. In an area for which there are special specialists (lawyers specializing in commercial legal protection and in particular in trademark law) and in which one is subject to the assessment of trademark offices and courts (especially on the question of a risk of confusion between older and younger trademarks) - there are no guarantees. This is complemented by potential knowledge gaps (trademark registers only reflect the current status of trademark applications and registrations in favor of third parties and are often not up-to-date), the fact that people are involved whose behavior you cannot predict (older, real or perceived rights holders). This is also one of the reasons why even the aforementioned lawyers do not give any guarantees on the legal performance of names.

But: One can work diligently, both I and the lawyers involved in the project. So well that in the end this enables you to do what you intended to do. This is better than any guarantee. Because you can usually not buy much on a defect guarantee, but you can make the most out of excellent work.

If you would like to know more, just give me a call or send me a mail.

Domains on offer

Are you looking for available domains?
Here is a list of available domains, primarily in .de and .com.
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