Alexandra Watkins

#437: How to Create Super Sticky Brand Names to Soup Up Your Story

#437: How to Create Super Sticky Brand Names to Soup Up Your Story

“What’s in a name?” Shakespeare asked in his Play Romeo & Juliet.

“That which we call a rose by any other name would smell just as sweet,” he proclaims suggesting that the name of things is irrelevant.

But Shakespeare didn’t live in the noisy times that we do now.

You and your customers have abundant choices on who to work for, what to buy, and where to eat. Powerful, illustrative names send a laser signal that catches attention.

If you don’t have a name that provides immediate meaning, piques interest or conveys who you are, what you stand for, and what you offer, then you will remain lost in the overgrown thicket of competition in the cacophony of communication we all compete in.

If you’re in need of a name, you’re in luck. Because today, the international queen of naming herself, Alexandra Watkins, will share with you how to come up with a super sticky, and even greasy, name.

Alexandra Watkins is a leading and outspoken authority on brand names with buzz. For nearly 20 years, she and her naming firm, Eat My Words, have created love-at-first-sight brand names for countless companies including Amazon, Coca-Cola, Disney, Twitter, and Google.

Her breakthrough creativity book, Hello, My Name is Awesome: How to Create Brand Names That Stick, was named a Top 10 Marketing Book by Inc. Magazine. Her personal “Name Hall of Fame” include the Wendy’s Baconator, Neato robotic vacuum, Burger King’s Mac n’ Cheetos, Spanish language school Gringo Lingo, and frozen yogurt franchise called Spoon Me.

Alexandra helps her clients by giving them brand names that begin to tell a story. For instance, she named a vertical farming company that is feeding the world PLENTY. The name Plenty is like the cover of a book that begs to be opened. By the way, Plenty was just named one of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential Companies.

Now, over my nearly 40-year career in brand storytelling, I’ve had an opportunity to name lots of stuff but without the process rigor Alexandra takes her client through. I got to roll out a number of the names we developed and bounced them off of Alexandra. It was fun and kinda scary.

I am curious about what you think of her observations relative to our naming conventions.

Discussed in this episode:

  1. Put your names through the SMILE test: The 5 qualities of a super-sticky name
  2. How to use the SCRATCH test to not bumble your name.
  3. The importance of finding the right name to launch your brand story and how to do it.


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