Acacia Avenue The Namer

Acacia Avenue The Namer utilizes consumers’ instinctive and conscious responses to brand and product names to get clear guidance in development. The Namer blends implicit and explicit responses to identify the most effective name for a product, brand, sub-brand or variant.


Key Measures

  • Test 4-10 names
  • Use System 1 techniques, including timed, instinctive responses
  • Get performance benchmarks for additional context
  • Test fit with product, values, and parent brand if relevant

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Methodology Summary

  • Brand names are not processed rationally, so this methodology is designed to yield more precise and true-to-life responses. This tool highlights the discrepancies between respondents’ emotional implicit response to a product name and their rational evaluation of it (often referred to as system 1 and 2 thinking).
  • This methodology uses an emotional reaction metric to assess people's positive, neutral, or negative feelings towards a name. This is reported for each name and benchmarked against a large database of names based on their positive response. The norms used are an intentionally high bar to account for the large number of names that never make it to market. For a new brand launch, the goal is to achieve a Good or Excellent name, while for sub-brands, an OK name can be sufficient. The level of negative response should also be considered, as highly polarizing names could have accidentally negative associations. 
  • Upon asking a respondent to choose between two potential product names, The Namer calculates the ‘speed of association’ as a contribution to its ranking system (a commercial application of the Harvard Implicit Test made famous by Malcolm Gladwell in Blink). This mimics the short time spent with consumers at the shelf. Without this crucial calculation, you have an incomprehensible list of ‘nice names.’
  • The instinctive choice metric compares the relative strength of names tested within the study, but is not normative. The benchmarks reflect categories like FMCG, QSR, and Tech, and categories with lower engagement like finance typically score less well.

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Questionnaire flow and key metrics definitions: 

  • Product Reaction. Respondents are asked to record their verbatim feedback on the product as described to them. They also select one of 6 faces reflecting a range of validated emotional reactions. 
  • Word Associations. The top 2 or 3 (if more than 3 tested) names based on each respondent’s personal selections are presented back to the respondent, one per screen. The respondent then is tasked with entering the 3 words they associate with that name. This exercise is repeated for the worst name in each respondent’s opinion. 
  • Emotional reaction. Using the same 6 validated emotional faces, respondents are asked to select the face that best represents how they think others would feel upon first hearing the name that’s being tested. 
  • Fit perceptions. Respondents are asked to rate on a scale of 0-10, how well each name fits with the product description and with the specific brand values of that product. If there is a parent brand associated with the product, the fit with that wider brand and its values,  are also tested on the top 3 names per respondent. 

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Acacia Avenue The Namer Configuration Checklist:

  • Names: Type in between 4 - 10 names.                                                                                                                                     
  • Proposition type: Select between new brand name - sub-brand name - variant name.
  • Category: Should be as broad as possible (used to describe the category your proposition belong to as well as fit with category).
  • Proposition description: Appears next to the names to help describe the product or proposition to customers. Should be short and simple (1 to 2 sentences).
  • Image of Product/Proposition (optional): (JPEG or PNG, max height 860) Appears alongside the description of your proposition.
  • Key Brand Values: The key brand values are statements that people associate with your brand's messaging and image. Type in between two and five brand values. Answers the question: “How much does the name [name you are testing] make you feel that this [category] is [brand value].?” (i.e., a great value).
  • Parent Brand Value (optional): For sub-brands or variant names only.

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If you are looking for any additional information, please check out the links below:

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