Choosing the right name for your blog aka child’s play

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Blog names are a bit like tattoos – once you’ve been inked (or bought that URL) you are together for life.

And, what might seem like the perfect concept at the time of creation, can feel like the complete opposite 12 months down the line.

So what’s the solution then? How can you ensure you make the right decision?

I’ve been doing some research and have come back with approach you may want to consider…

Blog naming rights aka child’s play

Before I unleash my theory, I thought it was worth getting a steer from some other sources to begin with – you know, a measuring stick.

DailyBlogTips.com suggests three rules for choosing a blog name:

  1. It must describe your blog
  2. It must be easy to remember
  3. It must be equal with the domain name

Chris Garrett has also listed some good criteria when developing a catchy blog name, including some advice about possible future directions.

I took these posts, and many others into account, and then I stumbled on a post called Top Tips for Choosing Baby Names – and this is where it all began to crystallize.

We spend WAY too much time pontificating and providing advice when really, common sense rules the roost.

To be sure, let’s test this theory…

Top tips for choosing a baby, erm, umm, blog name

1. Does the name fit with the baby?

An important tip – the last thing you want to do is give your blog a name that doesn’t sit alongside its personality or purpose. It is for this very reason I didn’t call my blog The Cat Corner. Meow!

2. Is the name difficult to pronounce? If so, consider how frustrated its parents might get by constant mispronunciation.

It could be argued that blogs are like babies – you bring them into the world, nurture them and introduce them to people you care about. So, it makes complete sense to choose a name that can be easily communicated or you may find yourself changing its name by deed poll, or even worse, using a URL that ends in .cc or .info.

3. Is the name difficult to spell? When your child starts going to school will he / she by hindered by your choice?

Although you can make money with mispelled names on Google, its not a decision I’d take lightly. It would also be a shame if you produced all this great content but a similar sounding URL was found before yours because you got too fancy. Keep it simple, or be made fun of…or even worse, be impossible to find.

4. Is the name very common? Do you mind that your child may be one of several children in his / her class or street with the same name?

The flip side to not being too clever is being too common – its the naming equivalent of turning up to a party in the same frock. Some of the most common words used in blog names have been compiled by Elliott C. Back – you may want to steer clear of these.

5. Would you still like the name when your child is not such a teeny tiny baby any more?

This is hard isn’t it. You’ll throw a bunch of names around and be convinced that you’ve found the ‘one’.Annoyingly, flash-in-the-pan names are often just that, and something like Social Media Magician is tough to live up to.

6. Consider your other children’s names
Yes, this is big. You may have other blogs. You may use specific handles throughout the rest of your social media portfolio. Does the name sit alongside the others? Is it different enough, yet could it feasibly be part of the family? 
7. Watch out for names that can be shortened or have a hidden joke
Imagine choosing a name or tag line like: Communications. Relationships. Answers. People. It says what you are about, clearly, but can easily be shortened to C.R.A.P. Not the ideal positioning for your blog…or child for that matter.
I hope I haven’t made too much light of this very important process.
If anything, I think this brings a very important element of communications to life: balance.
Seeking advice is great, but often the answer is characterised by common sense.
In any event, choose your blog name wisely…you need to be able to live with it for life…or until Google pushes it back down its search results.
Adam

4 Comments

  • Reply August 25, 2010

    Paul Sutton

    Good post, mate. As i’ve hinted at previously, my blog fell into category 5 – it grew up and I hated its name. This wasn’t so much a mistake as it was not really thinking through the fact that people might actually be interested in reading my inane social comms ramblings when I set it up over the Christmas holiday last year. As a result, 8 months down the line I’m ditching it and completely renaming, rebranding and relaunching it in a couple of weeks. Risky decision maybe, but this does go to prove your point: a blog is for life, not just for Christmas…

  • Reply August 25, 2010

    Adam Vincenzini

    I hear ya – a blog is a commitment, especially as it is your name that is attached to it – I chose the name for mine in the hope that I’d be able to talk about comms in the broadest context possible one day, not just the areas I am more familiar with – in hindsight, should I have just gone with something like AdamVincenzini.com? Apart from being a killer to spell, it doesn’t really say much – then again, it would have given me greater flexibility down the line.
    The benefit of hindsight eh?

  • Reply August 25, 2010

    Paul Sutton

    Also links with your SEO argument. One of the most important factors in SEO is your domain name. With all due respect, due you need to SEO ‘adamvincenzini’? No more than I need to SEO ‘paulsutton’. Hence, my new blog name is as a result of a heavy dose of keyword research crossed with ‘what domain names are still available’. It’s (I feel anyway) a good tip when it comes to naming a blog.

  • Reply August 25, 2010

    Holly

    Interesting post, wish I’d read it before I started both my blogs! I have a mummy blog with a very mummyish name (it’s a mummy’s life) and a PR blog http://www.practicallyreality.com that I chose in about 5 minutes. I’m a rather impulsive person so didn’t think too much about it, but you’re right I should have done. The point you make about longevity is a really valid one. For me Practicallyreality sums up how I feel about PR, it’s not really all that real is it? It’s smoke and mirrors most of the time. But then again, as a blog name it’s a bit up it’s own arse. I don’t suppose I’d be happy with anything though!

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