I’ve been busy starting companies lately, and as a result have had to spend a lot thinking of names for them. The above comic list some obvious things to avoid, but here are some useful tools to help you check the availability of a name, in particular a website name.
1. In Linux the “whois” command: whois [somecompanyname.com]
This tool let’s you check who owns a domain name.
2. Avoid checking the existence of a name on godaddy. If you try to check the name more then 3 times on their service, they will automatically register it.
3. Type the name directly in the address bar. Example. http://www.somename.com, if you get an error page, there’s a very good chance the domain isn’t taken.
4. Try to envision animals or objects that associate with your product. You’ll come up with some pretty cool names, I’m sure you can imagine what anime Twitter was thinking about.
5. Have a brain-storming session. Go around the group and ask them to spit the first word that comes to their mind, write it down on a whiteboard, continue until you have about 20 words. Don’t discourage random stupid words because they will often trigger other words in the minds of your group that will be useful.
6. Finally a name isn’t as important as bringing results. You can have the greatest name in the world, but if you don’t produce anything, the name will be useless. So never spend too much time on a name, just pick one, stick with it, and start building the company and its parts. Once you guys have a product / service model, then a name will come around naturally.
Feel free to post any questions below.
What anime was Twitter thinking about? It’s probably not Mahou Shoujo Lovely Twitter or Gundam Twitter Cross X: Galaxy because those shows do not exist.
I meant animal. It’s called proof reading Alex, maybe you should correct those errors not point them out…