Written by Canon Wing

I teach entrepreneurs and organizations the proven action steps to stand out within their market, improve the perceived value of their business, and better connect with their audience through naming, branding, storytelling, and communication platforms.

February 10, 2017

Consider: “There are some things money can’t buy. For everything else, there’s MasterCard.” Not Short. Not exactly simple. It hits story like a mac truck. It’s savory. I recited it to myself almost perfectly to write this blog so it has great “recall” for a longer tagline.

We are all emotional creatures, we all want to be loved, and accepted by our community. When we are creating new products, naming them and putting them out in the world we are peeling off a layer of our camouflage. We are grabbing the spotlight. The objective of your name is to stand out and be memorable. This is the equivalent of being the cool kid everyone knows and loves. So it’s only natural to get some of those old insecurities triggered. Let’s just call them out so we can recognize them and move forward.

Naming as a creative process brings up fears of:

  • Public Ridicule
  • Pigeonholing
  • Permanency

I’m writing this post as I face these fears myself. I’m currently in the second round of names for a food industry product. In general, most naming projects take three rounds. I will outline the difference between each round and the benefits of this structure in my upcoming webinar. But for our purposes here, just know there always comes a point in the process where one or more of these fears pops up like that annoying frenemy in junior high school.

Public Ridicule

You are above 95% of the competition because you are learning the power of naming. Investing in building the skill of naming is investing in your success. You will move far beyond worrying about what the public might think. You will be putting words in their mouth. Words like “Google it.” I know we’re at the beginning of your process so here’s a great resource to make sure you’re not offending anyone. Use Freedict.com to make sure your name isn’t offensive in other languages. Don’t be like Chevy, their car the Chevy Nova – No Va means no go in Spanish. Waterpik means Morning Erection in Danish. Can I say erection in a email? Well as long as I don’t put it on the shelves of Target… like Waterpik did. Ikea has a desk called Fartful. I was almost too embarrassed to type that out.


We were brought up to believe “do one thing and do it well.” This is no longer true. The new economy favors creativity, reinvention, and expansion. When you create a great name and build a tribe of loyal followers there comes a point when they want you to deliver more to them than your original offering. The key to longevity in any relationship is being able to grow together. Just ask any married couple. Besides, the parameters of a market are highly subjective and any definition is full of assumptions. If your are helping people with skin care, you can make the leap to home care, then office organization, then best business practices. Or you can go from skin care to aromatherapy, then herbs, Ayurveda, yoga, feng shui, office organization, then best business practices. Switch your perspective from “I don’t want to be pigeonholed to “I am the path.”


When you learn how to create a name with Mass Appeal your skill level will increase and you will be able to build additional product names, tag lines, and sales points around your umbrella name. Each individual product name will bolster your brand name so that is grows. The most obvious case of this is Apple. The little letter i has come a long way since its debut on Sesame Street. A name is permanent but the meaning can evolve and expand.
Today’s Wingspan “I am the path I see before me. I name that path Success.”