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June 13, 2004



I like mantra....obrital sounds a little wrong to me. Anyway think of your google rankings!

Jochem Donkers

Opel Mantra. I believe it was in the 80ties that Opel (European brand of General Motors) had a sports car in the market that was completely 'wrong'. They even made a film about a couple of Mantra drivers. Anyway, in grew out to something that the Germans would call a 'kult-objekt'.

Stacey Moore

Mantra Lab
Find Out What’s Worth Repeating


I have to say I really really like the "mantra" name. It just sounds cool.

Unfortunately, "brand mantra" is exactly the opposite of the image you want to present. it evokes the image of hammering a single idea like a nail into a board. "Orbital" gives me the opposite problem. It evokes "way out there" for me. Will you be saying you're a space cadet or starship commander?

I think I like "mantra" better than "orbital," given the choice. Mantra works great if you can completely divorce it away from that "brand" thing. I hate to ask, but... what is, exactly, your brand mantra? That corporations should develop who they are by focusing on their customers/clients needs? Have you tried 'client mantra'? or maybe "360 degree mantra"? Although the latter kind of sounds like scatter shooting.

Darrin Dickey

I'm in the boat with Rick. Every "perfect" name I come up with is already taken. Maybe I'll just make up a word...Flackelmax!


When I started up my second company (with a partner), we called it Twin Forces. While the name held meaning for the two of us, its biggest value was in being vague enough that we could fulfill any mission. (My first company was videobits which didn't stretch well outside the computer graphics and digital television production market).

So I think I agree in the need for a versatile name, as well as the suggestion to go completely oblique.

Also, redherring recently ran an article on naming as well
(free subscription required):

Stacey Moore

Popular business books often use mantra to mean somemthing that you hear over and over, but that is a limited perspective. The notion that mantra is simply a repeated phrase is akin to the notion that a vision or brand statement is simply a description of a company or its products. In both cases, the words themselves don't do much, it's the practice that makes a difference.

Have you been thinking of the brand mantra as an outcome? In reality, mantra is a tool used to reach an outcome. A person uses different mantras depending on what they want to achieve. By chanting the mantra, the practitioner aligns themselves with the principle represented by the mantra, thereby experiencing a shift in perspective. They get out of their own head, so to speak.

Applied to your business, the metaphor might go something like this: The mantras are discovered because you hear them repeatedly in conversations with customers. You pass your findings on to the client. The client then focuses on the customer mantras in order to align themselves with the customer, this shift in perspective is what creates the ah-hah. They get out of their own minds and into the mind of the customer.

The question isn't "What's your brand mantra?", it's "What are your customers' mantras?"

By the way, like Cydni, I came to your site because of the name.

Cydni Tetro

So your dilemna made me reflect on mine. While I am not renaming a company I am trying to figure out a name for a product. You know a name that that has all of those "naming objectives" you create to correctly position the product, define yet not limit its value prop and be memorable for the user.

Like Rick suggested before me, a name really only has meaning for the people invested in the name - usually the company people. I think we look for bonding with a name because somehow the name defines who we are. When in reality we can take any name and make it mean what we need it to.

With all that said I am still not closer to coming up with the "perfect" product name - and we have been working on it for months. So I wish you luck with your naming - I do think that brand mantra works. Tonight is the first time I have ever been to your site and and the name was interesting enough to make me click.

As an aside - the best names I have ever done are those that come in those first few days of naming. Somehow the longer the process the harder it is to name something.


Ah, a topic near and dear to me. I'm starting a consultancy and thinking through names. While surfing around, I ran across this PDF (it's about 800K).

Some interesting ideas in there...


Some thoughts and a name suggestion:

1) While branding is overused within the industry, clients don't necessarily perceive it this way. Like street jargon in ads, by the time a term reaches TV and print it's a good bet it's yesterday's news on the street. However, that doesn't mean it won't connect as "cool" terminology to a mainstream audience (if that's what you're going for). So it may not yet be time to throw off the brand term.

2) Brand Mantra has equity, is easy to recall (I think), and has a nice sound. You may be a little too caught up in meaning. I'm not convinced names have any meaning beyond what you put into them - at least within this context (a business name). I could be wrong on this but I don't think people are quite that literal. The word brand in Brand Mantra puts it in the ballpark, even if it is inaccurate, and sometimes that is enough.

3) Sometimes we shoot ourselves in the foot by trying to be too clever. As with the Web, people often don't pick up on clever wordplay, at least not within the context in which they are encountering a term (i.e., a company name). Perhaps they do over time, but not immediately. I think something simple, direct and memorable works best.

4) If you're not going with Brand Mantra and you like the 360 degrees idea behind Orbital (which, honestly, makes me think immediately of space, space travel and science, not marketing), my suggestion would be something like: Full Cirle or Full Circle Marketing or some variation thereof. (Of course, there's a good chance someone has this already.) Tagline, maybe something like: strategy beginning with your customers.

Well, there's my two cents. For what it's worth. ;-)

hugh macleod

Ummmm..... how about "Lovemarks Mantra"? Just kidding ;-)

Michele Miller

Johnnie beat me to it, Jennifer, but this is what I meant to write a couple of days ago. Why not strip down to the authentic you? Jennifer Rice... hey, it worked for Ogilvy & Mather, Wells Rich Greene, et. al.... :-)

Johnnie Moore

I agree with Tom about how naming becomes obsessive. As long as you're having fun doing it, great, but once it becomes a chore, it's time to stop.

I got rid of my brand name and my strapline and just became me. It feels like a big relief. Have you considered just being Jennifer Rice, the talented human being... not to summed up as a concept ? :)

Good luck with the quest!



Root = "evocative". You said that you wanted to get people to visualize what their company stood for, etc, and get to that "a ha" moment. Thus, you'd have to speak evocatively (eh? eh?) to get that visualization to happen.

Obviously, "Eureka" and "A-ha" are spoken for.


Will Pate

Name: Full Orbit
Tagline: 360 Degress of Perspective

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