Would a rose, by any other name, truly smell as sweet? Would your startup, without its name that is such a witty play on words and that requisite “ly” at the end, ever survive?
Well, if your startup had no name it probably wouldn’t survive because no one would know how to Google it, (and we all know Google rules all), but with a different name it definitely could have a chance. Let’s be real: most of us are just making stuff up and praying that there’s an available domain name anyway.
Fact: There are a lot of crappy startup names out there.
While you’re free to brainstorm names all on your lonesome, brainstorming is another cliché of startup life that can get real old, real fast. I’m pretty sure those dry-erase markers are killing more brain cells than most of us can spare, so let’s try to find a solution that doesn’t rely on chemical highs to get us all thinking creatively.
Fact: They don’t have to be so bad.
Okay kids, put those whiteboards away and get your typing fingers ready ‘cause I’ve got a website that can help you. It’s called NameFoo, (an odd name in itself, I have to say), and it will help you on your path to perfect startup name discovery.
It’s even simpler than that brainstorming sesh you were planning. All you do is pick a word that has to do with your startup and plug it into their name generator. NameFoo will come back with a bunch of different oddly spelled versions of your word, plus a your word with some interesting suffixes.
Say, for example, your startup was an app that helps people find the best fried chicken within walking distance. (Note: if no one has done this yet, I’m okay with you stealing the idea. Also, I’ll be your user zero.) Type “fried chicken” into NameFoo and here are some of the options it’ll come back with: phryed chykken, phried chicken, fried chickenhero, fried chickenscout, fried chickenrocket, and, my personal favorite, fried chickenchimp.
While some of these are just ridiculous and other are clearly taken from the names of popular websites, NameFoo is a good way to jog your brain out of its normal rhythms and into a realm of totally random possibilities when you’re (yes, whiteboard included) trying to come up with a name. And, if nothing else, it’s a fun little distraction that can make you feel like you’re working even when you’re just messing around.