Naming your blog is an important aspect of blog branding, or blog success for that matter. It seems very important to my visitors too. Ever since my original “What’s In a Name?” post, people have been asking for advice on how to select the best name for their blog.
As I said in the first post,
When choosing a domain name there are some factors to consider:
- How original and unique is it?
- How descriptive is it?
- What image does it convey?
- Would you remember it after seeing it once?
- Could you spell it after hearing it once?
All these factors add up to a catchy blog name, but thinking up a catchy blog name is only getting more difficult as the best .com domains get more and more scarce.
Tips for Creating the Best Blog Names
When I chose my domain name I went for “me”, brevity and spelling. So many people get my surname wrong (even good friends of mine), keeping ‘Garrett’ (two r’s, ‘e’, two t’s) out of it seemed a good idea at the time. This site is about branding me, and by extension my business. I also registered my company name (which was one of the last remaining four letter .coms!), and of course Authority Blogger which is used for my forum, newsletter and the online blogging course and service selling coaching product I am developing.
In my last post on blog naming I said:
A good name is
In addition a good blog name evokes or describes what it represents, but how much it describes directly or over time with exposure is up to you and your advertising budget.
chrisg.com represents me, Authority Blogger a product. One is very much in the short and descriptive, the other is somewhat descriptive, but more into the brand zone.
The way I often select brandable names is to not go so far into invented names that you need massive buzz or huge budget for people to know what it is.
Think Flickr, Zooomr and Plurk. Authority Blogger, CopyBlogger, ProBlogger, FreelanceSwitch don’t need quite as much imagination.
Developing a Descriptive and Brandable Blog Name
My simple technique for a descriptive but brandable domain is to combine target audience with benefits.
Your Audience + Benefit = Targeted and Attractive Name
So Authority Blogger shows bloggers how to grow their authority. RemarkableParents teaches parents how to be remarkable parents. OK, some great names are all benefits, but if you think about it they also select an audience, because the audience who wants those benefits is specific, such as ZenHabits.
Avoid the Generic
While it might be tempting to use generic words such as “World”, “Place”, “Thoughts”, “Central”, and they can get you out of a naming-hole, try to aim for specific and unique words that will hold firm in the brain of your audience. You will find it much easier to gain traction by communicating a unique and specific benefit to a targeted audience rather than something wide and loose such as “widget world”.
About Using Keywords + ‘Blog’ in the Name
Some names are all target audience, SEO keywords, or very plainly descriptive, for example I used to own a blog called DSLRBlog. This was a blog about DSLR cameras and photography. Actually I now think “blog” might be as bad or worse than the generic names I list above and the combination of keyword+blog, though initially seeming a good idea for search traffic. It probably held the site back. You see, nobody searches for “DSLR Blog” apart from people were looking for my blog. So while keywords do have an SEO benefit, I wonder if branding combined with killer content has as much or more benefit longer term.
Lately I’m actually steering away from “blog” in the name because I come across more and more people who are put off or confused by the word. Also I see those domains not aging or expanding as well. It could well be in a few years we don’t call it blogging, or you might want to develop your blog into a member site.
Have Fun With Your Name
If your blog is not going to be mega serious then have fun with it. Fun, humor, are incredibly effective for both getting noticed and being memorable. A perfect example in my mind is MenWithPens, it’s both evocative of their service and fun. Another is RottenTomatoes.
One thing to avoid though with humor or fun is inside jokes as they have a tendency to exclude rather than attract.
When inventing names for your blog, think about
- Who your blog is for
- What the reader benefit will be
- The personality you want to evoke
- Where and how you want to use the name
- Possible future directions
- How you can position against the established names
Got any more tips or examples of brilliant blog names? Please share in the comments …
Table of contents for Better Blog Branding
- Better Blog Branding: What’s In a Name?
- Better Blog Branding: 10 Ways To Destroy Your Brand
- Better Blog Branding: Domain Exclusivity
- Better Blog Branding: Is Your Brand Breaking Promises?
- Better Blog Branding: Finding Your Uniqueness
- Better Blog Branding: How to Stand Out By Being First
- Better Blog Branding: Your Blogs Hidden Messages
- Better Blog Branding: Your Successful Brand
- Branding and Changing the Rules of the Game
- Naming Your Blog: How to Create Catchy Blog Names
- What Are You Saying Between the Lines?