So where do company names come from?

<p>Every time I drive byVulcan, I think " Geek"</p>

<p>I think we have already heard where the Starbucks name came from ( Moby Dick)</p>

<p>I also was a little miffed recently when a nursery a few blocks away reopened as " Emerald City Gardens" ( the name I was thinking of)</p>

<p>Many local companies have family names- Nordstrom used to be a family owned shoe store - I am not sure of the connection between the Amazon river and Bezos however, and I am sure we have all heard the joke about Microsoft being anatomically descriptive.</p>

<p>But in trying to come up with another name I was wondering, how do you do that? What are good names, and does it make a difference?</p>

<p>I was thinking about rock bands for example and how many of them are cannibalizing each other ( I mean that musicians are often in more than one band at same time), and some "take" and "take off" and others don't.
Does it have anything to do with the name?
How big will Minus the Bear get? What kind of music does Ghostland Observatory play? ( rhetorical) ;)
Would you want your daughter to be dating one of the New Pornographers?
And did Strawberry Alarm clock ever have more than a few songs on the radio?</p>

<p>I register company names and it can sometimes be incredibly complicated. Sometimes not. There are expensive searches to be done, and frequently owners are deeply emotional about those names.</p>

<p>Lots of lawsuits connected to the use of names. In fact, that's most of what I do at this moment in time.</p>

<p>I also constantly register company names. It can be a pain in the butt finding an acceptable name.</p>

<p>The recent rage (past few years) has been to use the names of greek and roman gods, i.e. Cerberus. Many clients do not want to use the family name anymore because of privacy issues.</p>

<p>I was thinking of using our family name, but I don't get along with my inlaws ( most of the people in our area with that name are related)
My "maiden" name is generic- Wilson, but was actually my dads stepfathers name that he didn't get along with, and my brother changed his own name to our fathers birth fathers name.
I don't have a connection with him either though. ( although my last name wangled two dates with Annie Wilsons * local singer* former boyfriend ;) many years ago)
It is hard to think of a name.</p>

<p>The Emerald City Gardens owner was surprised when he found that it was still available, Seattle was touted as " the Emerald City" a while ago, but I guess there aren't that many company names related. ( one is in Chicago)</p>

<p>I remember when Amazon was suing small companies that were using the name- which I though was an abuse of power but whatever.</p>

<p>But there are some names that I think are great- even though they have little to do with what the business now sells.
Remember when Banana Republic had catalogs that were colored sketches of attire to wear in the "bush"?
I still have several things from that era- including a safari jacket ;)</p>

<p>It was exciting when they opened up a shop complete with a Jeep in the front window, but sad when they started selling office wear.</p>

The recent rage (past few years) has been to use the names of greek and roman gods, i.e. Cerberus. Many clients do not want to use the family name anymore because of privacy issues.


<p>Greek and Roman gods and mythical creatures have always been popular with biotechs. Such names ususally translate well into other languages. Nowadays, naming a company or a product can be a nightmare if one has to consider international perception of the name.</p>

<p>When I bought my store, I had to change the name of it. The previous owners wanted $25K (on top of the purchase price) for the name. I did a little market research, found out that very few people knew the <em>names</em> of the four independent pet shops in town, but rather identified them by location. So -- IMO the name of the shop was not worth the price tag. There was an uncopyrighted tag line in their store name that they were happy to give me (Pet Shop Extraordinaire).</p>

<p>Then -- what am I going to name it?? (TOWN NAME) Pet Shop was already taken. I didn't want to get locked in to the plaza or street name. I hate the word 'critter' so all variations of that were out. We do all kinds of pets, not just dogs and cats, so the name had to encompass different species and different groups of pets. Furry something didn't includes scales or feathers.</p>

<p>After I chose a name -- from a children's song actually -- I went on the web and googled it inside out and upside down. I found a few other shops with that name, but none in my state. And a magazine. </p>

<p>The new store name -- began with an A ... so it's first in directory listings. It came with a jingle -- a take off on the children's song. And the second word rhymed with "extraordinaire". That's the story of how I came up with the name:</p>

<p>Animal Fair, the pet shop extraordinaire! (cue the oompa pa carousel music)</p>

<p>thats a great name cnp</p>

<p>cnp, that is a great name for a pet store! I'd love to buy a gerbil from your Animal Fair!</p>

<p>Thanks -- whenever you are in Connecticut, come visit Animal Fair. After all, the birds and the beast are there!</p>

<p>When I was in London last month, I got to visit Animal Fair of Kensington! The birds and the beasts are there too!</p>

<p>EK: How about "Shoots and Leaves"?</p>