From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 12: The key is to focus on the positioning of your brand, and then look for names that best support that positioning, being careful not to filter out potential naming directions or, conversely, to allow anything and everything through.
From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 18: It’s a very simple calculus: if your competitors are all doing the same thing, then you will stand out if you do something different. And the first and most visible point of differentiation is with your name.
From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 25: When creating a brand name or any collateral messaging, avoid vacant, overused words like “solutions.” A quick web search will confirm that you can find a solution for nearly every problem, except perhaps for the problem of having too many “solutions.”
From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 9: Which archetypes – The Hero, The Great Mother, The Mentor, The Guardian, The Herald, The Shadow, The Trickster – does your brand most closely align with? Discover the epic ideas behind your brand and they will lead to your unique story and positioning.
From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 26: Beware “experts” who cloak their methodology in the jargony garb of fancy proprietary “black box” naming “solutions.” Naming is hard work, and to do it right requires focus, passion and persistence, but rocket surgery it is not. If a consultant has a rigorous process for creating names, they shouldn’t be afraid to share that with the whole world.
Zinzin has emerged from the underground. After months of development, I am excited to announce the launch of the naming agency Zinzin and our new website at Zinzin.com. We believe in the emotional power of names, names that become art and poetry, not just commodities that nobody can remember. From a rigorous process, we create powerful product and company names to propel and differentiate brands beyond their competition. We want to set your brand free.
For the past nine years I have been the co-founder and creative director of the naming firm Igor, and have created Zinzin to expand into new directions and further advance my vision of the power of names. I have assembled a great team to help me realize this vision, and together we are driven to create amazing names for our clients.
I believe that the Zinzin website is now the deepest resource available for understanding the nuts and bolts of naming companies and products. The site includes a detailed Process section; the Naming Manifesto, which lays out our philosophy in numbered bites and will continue to grow; a rich Portfolio of the names we have created; a Press section with the articles we have appeared in; and our Blog, Observations (&Inspirations), where we will have an ongoing dialog about all issues related to naming, branding, art and culture. You can read about Our Story, Our People and Our Name, and Contact us if you’d like to learn how we can help you with your naming project.
Another feature of the Zinzin website is The Compendium of Amazing Names (The CAN), a regularly updated collection of the greatest and most powerful company and product names, as we see them, together with a brief analysis of why each is so effective. We created The CAN because we and others in the naming community often talk and write about what we think makes for great brand names, but other than a few examples, no larger sampling of such names has ever been assembled. Until now. We believe The CAN will be a great reference for understanding how mere names can be transformed into successful brands with stopping and staying power. The CAN is also a celebration, sort of a “Names Hall of Fame,” which will hopefully help us advance our larger mission of seeing the world filled with great names, no matter their origin.”
Our website also includes a Downloads page, where you can download our Naming Guides in PDF format, along with a nicely designed PDF version of the Naming Manifesto.
We are pumped up, excited about the future, and already helping clients navigate the adventure that is naming, on their way to achieving the ultimate goal: having a powerful brand name that propels itself through the culture and gives their marketing efforts an enormous boost for years to come. Zinzin has arrived.
Founder / Creative Director
[Image: that’s me drawing Zinzin with light, July 14, 2011 at the end of the mile-long Lava River Cave near Bend, Oregon. 80°F above ground, 42°F in the cave.]
From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 8: The positioning of a brand is the set of core messages the brand demonstrates to the world, through tone, personality, emotion and narrative…. You are not naming a company or product – you are instead naming the positioning of a company or product.
From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 5: When mucking about with language, don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty.
From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 4: Language is on the move. It is a living, breathing organism, always changing, morphing, evolving. Don’t fear this change – revel in it.
From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 10: Great names demonstrate your brand positioning. Weak names force you to explain your brand positioning, and that’s called advertising.
From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 6: Language…is capable of being influenced, molded, formed, deformed and reformed before our eyes and ears. It is a mutant made to be torn asunder and reconfigured.
From the Naming & Branding Manifesto, number 1: As you embark on the adventure of naming your company or product, you have the opportunity to create a Big Bang or a little whimper. Do the right thing – make a Big Bang.