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Here's Why Your Brand Name Needs to Be Awesome

Updated: Mar 21

This episode features Alexandra Watkins, the Queen of Brand Naming, Founder of Eat My Words, and author of the award-winning book, Hello My Name Is Awesome

The crew from Season 1 of Let's Blow This Up

Table of Contents

3 Big Takeaways From This Episode

  1. The name of your brand is something you need to take very seriously, right from the start. There's so much positive that can happen with a powerful brand name...just as there's so much negative that can happen with a weak one.

  2. Regardless of how long your brand has been in existence, it's never too late to change your name. If you feel a rebrand is in order, don't let tenure be what prevents you from changing to something that could elevate you in a profound way.

  3. Pick a name that stands out, makes an emotional connection, and makes people smile - versus picking one that falls flat, blends in, and makes people scratch their heads and ponder what you were thinking.


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In Season 1 Episode 2 of Let's Blow This Up, the Queen of Brand Naming, Alexandra Watkins, discusses the importance of a strong brand name and how to test YOUR brand name to make sure it's up to par.

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The Value of a Powerful Brand Name

Who is Jimmy Donaldson? At first glance, that name most likely sounds pretty common and not one that grabs your attention.

But what if I told you that Jimmy Donaldson is one of the most recognizable figures on the face of the earth?

Still stumped? That's because you, me, and the rest of the world know him by his undeniable brand name - Mr. Beast.

Which name sounds cooler to you: Mr. Beast or Mr. Donaldson? No offense to you if your last name is Donaldson, but Mr. Beast gets the nod in this contest.

This is a prime example of a strong brand name. Here's another:

For many years, I operated my business as Cercone Consulting until I realized that name didn't have much cache. I decided to implement the process you'll learn about in this episode from Alexandra Watkins and BOOM...Bombtrack Media was born.

Even Alexandra explained she used to go by her own name in business before rebranding to Eat My Words.

Myself, Alexandra, and Mr. Beast are just three examples of people who understand the value of a powerful brand name and created something that has seemingly limitless potential in regards to spinoffs, permutations, and branding.

At Bombtrack Media:

  • I focus on making EXPLOSIVE content

  • My consulting packages are aptly named Dynamite, TNT, and Nitro

  • You, as a listener of this podcast, are a member of 'The Bomb Squad'

  • During the recording of this episode, my podcast studio was dubbed 'The Bomb Shelter'

As Alexandra will teach you in this episode, a brand name with legs can go far. Very far.

If you're in the naming phase of your business venture or have been contemplating a rebrand, you don't want to miss this conversation.

The Key Elements of Alexandra's S.M.I.L.E. Test

The S.M.I.L.E. Test earns its name because it will help you create a brand name that makes people smile. As opposed to a name that makes people scratch their heads, which you'll learn more about in the next section.

S.M.I.L.E. breaks down as follows:

  • S: Suggestive - Your name needs to suggest a positive brand experience

  • M: Memorable - Your name needs to be memorable so it sticks in people's minds

  • I: Imagery - Your brand should feature powerful imagery that grabs a person's attention

  • L: Legs - The mileage you get out of your brand name comes down to its legs. Like I broke down a moment ago, Bombtrack Media has great legs and opens up numerous branding opportunities

  • E: Emotional - Your brand name should make an emotional connection with people or else it'll go right over their head

This man is confused because he just stumbled on a brand name that makes NO sense

The 'Dark Side' of Brand Names: Breaking Down Alexandra's S.C.R.A.T.C.H. Test

Unfortunately, there are a lot of names out there that will make you, as the acronym suggests, scratch your head and wonder "WTF were they thinking?"

If you follow Alexandra's advice, this is a trap you can avoid.

The S.C.R.A.T.C.H. Test looks at seven aspects of naming your brand you should steer clear from. They break down as follows:

  • S: Spelling Challenge - Your brand name should never look like a typo. It needs to be frustration-free for people who discover you. You never want a first-time customer being confused by your name. It's almost a 100% guarantee they'll keep shopping

  • C: Copycat - Don't try to be someone else when you can be yourself

  • R: Restrictive - It's impossible to see into the future, but you don't want to put yourself in a position where you outgrow your name. EXAMPLE: 24 Hour Fitness...not all of their locations are open 24 hours

  • A: Annoying - Avoid creating a name that annoys people. It should never be irritating to say, spelled backwards, have a number in the middle, or be ambiguous to a point where no one has any clue what you do

  • T: Tame - You never want your name to be tame or else you run the risk of getting lost in the shuffle. You need to stand out and the bolder your name is, the more memorable you'll be

  • C: Curse of Knowledge - This means your name is too "inside," in a foreign language, or based on a word from a foreign language that most people won't understand without an explanation

  • H: Hard to Pronounce - This one is pretty self-explanatory. If your name is hard to pronounce, you'll always find yourself explaining how to say it, what it means, etc. I've made this mistake in the's not fun.


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