The following is an edited transcript of my video Building a Bold Brand Wheel: 8 Types of Bold Brand Names.

I am always looking for ways to help take trademark and branding concepts and boil them down to a visual or a quote, or some way to help convey something that’s complex in a bit more digestible manner. And I have talked a lot about bold brand names, and how to build them, and the different types of literary tools that can be used to create bold brand names. And I recently was inspired to come up with the Building a Bold Brand Wheel that breaks down these different types of names.

You can see in this wheel that we’ve taken the eight different types of bold brand names and broken them down into different categories. Four of them are based on the meaning of the terms, two of them are based on sound tricks, and two of them are based on combinations of words and syllables. I think this tool is really, really cool to help think about the different types of bold brand names that are out there when you are thinking about new names or where your name might fit in terms of what type of a bold brand it is.

Let’s talk about the combination types of words: telescoping terms and portmanteaus. Telescoping terms are when you take two words and overlap portions of them to create one new word based on that overlap. A portmanteau is similar, but it’s when you take two words and sort of combine the elements of them, and it’s not a full overlap, to make a new word. Both of these combination tools can be very valuable to taking words that are highly suggestive, or maybe even on their own descriptive of your products or services, but create something new out of them.

How about sound tools? There’s two types of sound tools. One is rhyme, which usually means that the end of the word, the last portion of the words, the last letter, the last syllable, is going to rhyme. Alliteration is the other type of sound trick where generally the beginning of the words will have the same sound or the same letter. Both of these tools can help take words that might otherwise have more plain and basic meaning and create something new and more exciting when you put words together that use alliteration or rhyme.

There are four types of literary tools that relate to meaning. A pun is a creative play on words that takes something, maybe a well-known phrase, and twists the meaning of it, or inserts a word that is unexpected. A double entendre is when you take a word or a phrase that has multiple meanings that are applicable to the product or service. The third type of meaning is something provocative. You take a word or a phrase that really is meant to stand out, to call attention to the user. And it’s bold. It’s really bold because it’s provocative. And that’s a great way to bring attention to your brand name and make it stand out. The fourth type is incongruous, and that’s where you take words or parts of words that probably don’t really belong together in a natural way, but when you force them together, because they have some sort of meaning as it relates to your products or services, it creates a new meaning and the viewer or listener wouldn’t expect to see those two words together because they’re not a natural pair, they don’t naturally go together in your field.

These tools, whether it’s meaning, combinations, or sounds, are great ways to think about creating bold brand names, especially if you’re brainstorming for new names and looking to create a strong creative trademark that will stand apart from the competitors.

I suggest you look at this wheel and think about what type of bold brand name might work for your situation. If you have any questions about your name, your situation, or you’re ready to take steps to do a comprehensive search, or to register and protect that bold brand name, connect with me on our website.


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