Choosing a name for your blog is like choosing a name for a child, choose carefully. How do you go about selecting the perfect name?
Names are tricky, along with choosing your niche a name can be one of the harder initial decisions. Surprisingly hard. When you do find a name that you like then you have to go back to the drawing board because the ideal domain is taken.
You can only do this well after settling on a niche for your blog. Only personal blogs can really successfully start with the blog name and choose the subject matter later! First have a think about what sort of blog you are writing. Take a look around at what sort of blogs are in your subscription list, here are some examples.
- Personal Blog – These vary from “Jo Bloggers Blog” to completely random names. Personal blogs are all about unique personality and the names are either unimaginatively the persons name or evoke the promise of interest and fun. Sometimes a mixture of the two works like in Gill Gunsons Gillianic Tendencies
- Whimsical Blog – If the aim is to be funny then choosing a dry business like name is not going to work. Hugh Macleod is a cartoonist who draws on the back of business cards but he also has made a name for himself with his snarky marketing content, he calls his blog Gapingvoid.
- Product Blog – Product blogs range from the random Woot to the obvious PVRBlog, mainly depending on the tightness of focus.
- Business Blog – Some business blogs are just extensions of the company website, others are consultants and authors who use their own name, or a straightforward nod to the target audience such as Darrens ProBlogger.
So have a think about what your blog is going to be and think about what type of name you need to choose. Descriptive, evocative, direct or metaphor?
I quite like the metaphor route, names like BitTorrent speak volumes to me, evocative names also work for me too which is lucky because I think Performancing falls under that category. They are not to everyone’s taste though, just look at some of the arguments about Seth Godins new Squidoo service name. Product blogs about a particular item or service I think might work best when the name is clearly bound to the product as in the PVR example. A lot has to do with your target audience. What will your audience be expecting?
When looking at evocative or metaphorical names it is sometimes useful to think what the benefit is that your blog will provide, or what problem do you solve? Performancing is clearly about helping your blogging (and revenue) performance. We could have been more direct and called it something with “cash” or “money” or “ROI” etc in the title but Performancing really stands out, even if you don’t like it.
What are your competitors names? If standing out is important then you need to consider what your competitions names are like. If they are all descriptive a more creative name might give you that bit of difference. Your name is very important in branding and positioning.
Will your blog always have focus or will you want to extend out? A more generic name might be necessary if you will want to have multiple blogs off the same root name.
A really good name for your blog will be
Look at what we have discussed so far and aim to invent more and more words as they spring to mind. Play with ideas. Combining words and creating new words, checking a thesaurus, getting the help of friends and family can all help.
Switch off your internal critic while you create. Jot down every name no matter how daft, at this point you are aiming for quantity, not quality!
Once you have a big long list go through and ditch the worst offenders then copy the remaining list and either choose or get friends to each score a top three. Those you take to the computer and check for domain name availability.
A word on search engines
While there may be a small benefit with search engines to have your domain use a keyword, I believe this is by far outweighed by the branding benefits of choosing a great name. If your best name does not contain your keywords do not sweat. I would much rather have a good name than a keyword-laden one.
The name you choose will be up to you, you have to live with it. In the end it is your choice so while I have suggested you take others opinions into account, you go with what you believe is right.
How did you choose your blogs name? What feedback do you get about your blog name?