SMILE or SCRATCH?
Weekly Report CW30
Three weeks of vacation
I feel relaxed and decided to follow up with Friday reports this quarter. I will change these Friday Medium posts slightly:
- First I share some inspirational knowledge.
- Then I go into my Friday Report about the week.
Brand Names that make you SMILE.
Alexandra Watkins made their process at eatmywords.com available to create super-sticky brand names. It’s all in her book “My Name Is Awesome”. Their process is straightforward, easy to understand and simply amazing. The main principle to avoid bad brand names is the Smile and Scratch test. A brand name should have the following qualities, rather than the seven dealbreakers below:
Five qualities of a super-sticky name
- Suggestive: Evokes something about your brand
- Memorable: Resonates with your audience
- Imagery: Aids memory through advocative visuals
- Legs: Lends itself to a theme for extended mileage
- Emotional: Moves people
The seven dealbreakers
- Spelling Challenged: Looks like a typo
- CopyCat: Is similar to competitors’ names
- Restrictive: Limits future growth
- Annoying: Seems forced, frustrates customers
- Tame: Fells flat, descriptive, uninspired
- Curse of knowledge: Makes sense only to insiders
- Hard to pronounce: Not obvious or is unapproachable
What I especially like in their process is the Creative Brief. Before starting to work for a clients new name, it’s important to clarify questions about the project and the brand. Clients have to sign it off to start the brainstorming phase, or as Alexandra calls it, the Google Storming. When I’ve worked as a designer, most client’s couldn’t answer these questions. Sometimes, it ended up with dying StartUps. Today I make sure that our clients can easily answer every Creative Brief out there, because of our StrategyGuide.
A client of mine became uncertain about the original name after creating the OnSaPa™ StrategyGuide for her project. She asked herself and me: “Does the original name really work for the brand?”. Now we are going to find out by doing Alexandra’s naming process. If there is a better name for the project, my client will change it to the new name.
This shows one more time that our StrategyGuide is especially valuable for Start-Ups. Imagine you’d start a business, brand everything, pay money and energy and then feeling frustrated because you picked the wrong name. Or worse—stay endlessly in the design phase, spending all your money because they don’t get it right for you. (Psst… 🤫 It’s because you don’t know where you exactly want to go, not the designers' fault).
What I’m describing here counts for so many other things than the name. It counts for the whole product or service you provide. It’s better to have all the important choices On The Same Page before you go into production.
In this quarter, I’m in production mode to publish our products after working with a few clients. It’s time to make it public and to sign more partners. Really excited to help more people achieve more. There are so many with great potential. Everywhere on earth.
Don’t invent everything yourself.
I love proven methods by experts, and I’m going to tell you why: Until I learnt my lesson ten years ago, I avoided using methods and processes by other people. I had this wrong belief that I can invent everything myself. I learnt this lesson the hard way with music. For sixteen years—never went to a music school and never learnt to play an instrument—I produced electronic music. I knew all the technical stuff, such as turning the right wheels on synthesizers or programming drum computers. And I had a lot of fun creating it. But when I listened to my finished tracks, I always thought, “meh, this doesn’t sound right”. I started searching for answers and wrote to producers I admired, but nobody told me what was wrong. For the whole time of these sixteen years of music production, I never found out why it doesn’t sound good enough. Then finally, my girlfriend gave me this book:
When I read this book, I was sad and happy at the same time. It was a huge learning for me that I stopped believing I can do everything myself. And I’m glad that I’ve made it through this ugly lesson. Today, when I have to attack a challenge, I’m uber open-minded to see how experts do it first. I get their books, find out about the processes and play it through myself exactly how they describe it, like baking with a recipe. I don’t change it, especially not the first time I do it.
The StrategyGuide by OnSaPa™ brings the most essential parts for starting a business “On The Same Page”, so that people achieve more.
When Tim and I built the first version of the StrategyGuide within a period of a year, we did it by a deep dive into failing and succeeding businesses. Then we created a guided process to help people achieve more. I consider OnSaPa’s StrategyGuide the most important part before starting a long-term journey, and I’m super glad it already proves to work.
The Five Friday Questions (CW30)
I end every week with a Friday Report and five questions, as we implemented it at OnSaPa GmbH to keep a consistent feedback relation.
What was good?
- Signed off OKRs for Q3
- Relaxed from vacation
- Two applications for a side job
- Focus work on product publication for OnSaPa
- Read two books
What to look at in the future?
- Don’t forget to put OKRs into clockify
- Update Smartphones for less distraction
What was shitty?
What should stay as it is?
What was neglected?
I will be back next Friday.
Enjoy a wonderful holiday!