Month: August 2015

Washingtonian – Why Do So Many Hot New Restaurants Have Names That Sound the Same?

By Phil Davis | August 26, 2015

(Excerpts) In fact, though, the food world is inherently and relentlessly copycat and faddish (cf. chefs turning to food trucks, the trend of restaurants opening on the outer edges of downtown, the explosion of hipster Asian cooking.) Or, as Phillip Davis, the president of Tungsten Branding, a North Carolina-based branding and name development company for start-ups and entrepreneurs, puts it: “fish still swim in schools.”

“Really creative names,” he said, “are perpendicular to trends.” And most businesses don’t want to be perpendicular to trends; they want to be congruent with them. He likened a creative name to the “kid in school with a white pressed shirt and tie. The really creative kid is the oddball kid.” Davis said the first question he asks of potential clients is, “Do you want to stand out or do you want to fit in?”

“I tell people: when you do something different in the name, the product has to be tangibly different, so that the aha! of what you’re doing matches the aha! of the name. It has to be measurably different from other, similar business or experientially different.” When he frames the matter for his clients like that, Davis said, they begin to understand the enormous pressure they will be subjecting themselves to in stamping themselves as different from the herd. Better to sound like everyone else, they reason, and strive to carve out a small niche in the marketplace by putting out a useful, high-quality product.

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KeySystems – Naming Experts’ 21 Tips to Choose the Right Domain Name in the New Top Level Domain Space

By Phil Davis | August 10, 2015

(Excerpts) What’s the right domain name to use as your web address? To help me out I got valuable input from some of the best naming specialists in the world. They spend their time brainstorming new brand names – and domain names is a natural part of their conversation with clients.

I asked Phil Davis, a world renowned naming expert, what his thoughts were on making the choice between .com and the new domain extensions for your business.

As a general rule, I advise my clients to go with a .com, since it’s the default behavior of most internet users to type that extension. When using a new TLD extension, you, as the business owner, are doing the heavy lifting in helping to promote and educate the public about that extension, and it can prove disruptive to your own message (e.g. having to stop and explain that the name ends in .xyz vs. .com) I would wait for a significant precedent to be set in the market to pave the way before using the extension, which may happen at some point.

The .com domain name will be the “downtown” real estate for the foreseeable future.

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