I wanted to start a blog or online community for quite a long time. Instead of diving right into my dream, I waited…for years. I knew everything about my site, from which topics I’d cover to which blogging platform I’d use, but I was hung up on one detail that seemed immensely important, yet impossible to finalize.
What the heck I would call it.
I created lists of ideas, used random name generators online, and just about threw in the towel when finally “The Nectar Collective” popped into my head. The name felt “right” to me and instead of overanalyzing it like I was prone to, I just went with it and haven’t looked back since! (For an explanation on what “The Nectar Collective” means, scroll down to the end of this article!).
If you’re stuck on what to call your new blog or business, or have been putting off your great ideas simply because you don’t know what to call them, then read on for some helpful tips and strategies that will make naming your new blog or biz a cinch. There’s also a free, printable worksheet to help you get started!
Step 1: Explore what your brand is all about.
This is absolutely key to finding a great name that you’ll still love years down the road. Naming your blog or business needs to be done from the inside out. If you know the foundation of your brand, then coming up with a name that personifies it is a whole lot easier. Plus, while writing about what your brand is, you’ll likely come up with tons of descriptive words that you can use in your name. Here are some questions you should be asking yourself:
- What value does your brand give to other people?
- Which three words do you want people to associate with your brand?
- What is your brand all about? If you’re selling something, what is it? If you’re writing blog posts, what kinds of topics will you cover?
- Who is your ideal reader? Think about who this person is — what’s their name? What are their hobbies? Where do they work? The more details, the better!
- What kind of mood or tone will your brand convey?
- Which blog or brand names do you love? Is there anything about them that strikes you as similar? For example, maybe they all use alliteration or sound upbeat and happy.
I recommend printing out these questions and writing down your answers. Click here to download a printable version, or click the image below!
Step 2: Create lists of words that describe your brand.
Now, take everything you wrote down from step 1 and pick out the words that describe your brand. Use those words (and a thesaurus!) to think of even more words with the same meaning.
For example, maybe you want to create an upbeat, fashion blog that inspires your readers to cultivate their own, unique style. You’ll be sporting tons of colorful, thrifted outfits in your posts and writing about how to shop on a budget. Some keywords that you could use from that spiel? Upbeat, fashion, inspire, unique, style, colorful, thrifted, and budget! Then, we could think of other, related words until we have a long list of options. This works a lot better than sitting at your desk, hoping something just “comes to you.” 😉
Step 3: Pair your words together to form a variety of combinations.
Now, the fun part! Look at your giant list of words and start combining them. It might help to separate them into two lists: one for adjectives/adverbs and one for nouns, so that it’s easier to pair them up.
Don’t be afraid to get creative here! Maybe you like a certain word, but want to change it slightly and create your own word. Or perhaps you’d like to combine two words together. Test ’em out! My only advice if you do this is to make sure it’s readable and easy to pronounce.
Things to keep in mind when selecting your name:
- Is it too trendy? Will your name still be relevant in a few years or does it play on something that’s only popular right now?
- What if you tweak your focus down the road? Is your name so specific that you won’t have room to write about other topics?
Step 4: The Domain Name Test
Once you’ve come up with a name you’re diggin’, it’s time to see if it’s available as a website URL. Go to GoDaddy.com and type in your name idea. If it’s available, then swoop it up! You done did it, my friend! If not, then try thinking of ways you can slightly change it.
Also, if it is unavailable, I recommend looking up the site to see if they’re actually using the name you had in mind. If so, it might be best to try something completely different to avoid any confusion.
Lastly, your dream name might be available…but not as a “.com.” If the name you want is only available as “.net” or another suffix, then I suggest altering it a bit to obtain the “.com” version. A different suffix isn’t the end of the world, but puts you at a slight disadvantage.
Step 5: let go.
Yes, your brand’s name is important. But what’s more important? Your brand and all the freakin’ sweet things you plan to do with it. Think of it this way: your name does not define your brand; your brand defines your name. Do you think people immediately grasp my reasoning behind the name “The Nectar Collective”? Meh, probably not. But once someone peruses this site, they understand what we’re all about a whole lot better. The name becomes secondary to what our brand and message actually is. So, give some thought to your blog or business’s name, but don’t put your kick-butt idea on hold until the next millennium because you’re waiting for the perfect name to come to you.
Want some feedback on your name idea? Feel free to share it in the comments! I’m happy to share my thoughts on your brand name and I bet other readers would love to do the same. 🙂
p.s. How I Grew My Blog + 5 Ways to Build an Active Community on Your Blog
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So, what does “The Nectar Collective” mean? One of the biggest factors for me in creating this blog was to make sure it felt like a community. More than sharing tidbits about my life, I wanted readers to feel comfortable sharing pieces about theirs. I toiled with including the word “society,” because I love the way it looks and sounds, but it felt a bit too political for me and eventually, I settled on using “collective.”
As for “nectar,” my name, Melyssa, means “bee” and I’ve always loved bees for this, and other reasons. Bees, by the way, are serious masters of “community.” Anyways, “nectar” is what bees use to make honey, and I wanted this blog to help or inspire people to make their own “honey.” In this case, “honey” being all the awesome stuff that makes one’s life meaningful — your business, your relationships, and especially yourself. Combined together, “The Nectar Collective” is a community for people who want to improve their lives and feel connected to others. Get it? 🙂