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Naming Your Product

I had lunch with a good friend of mine last week. He’s working on a very interesting product and seems possessed by its possiblities.

But he’s stuck on something. He’s stuck on what to name the product. Something easy to spell. Something memorable. Something serious but not too serious. Many of you have gone through this exercise. It ain’t easy.

At the end of the day the question is whether any of this really matters. Maybe all thats needed is just a great product and the name is less important?

After thinking about it more I dont’ think that is the case. Just for a moment consider the product names at Apple. Do you think those names matter?

I think choosing your product name is crucial. And it’s not just the name, consider it the starting point of the soul of your product.

I remember when I first met Biz Stone, one of the Twitter cofounders, he told me that Twitter wasn’t their initial name for the product idea. The core idea that your phone would let out a short “chirp” drove their naming decision. They started riffing on names like jitter, twitch, twitter, etc. Ultimately they fell in love with the name Twitter but it wasnt available at the time. So they created the initial site at Twttr.com to move foward before buying the vowels later.

I think great companies are passionate about everything they do. And it all starts with their name. Don’t give up on it. Make sure you love it.