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Now that you're sensitized to word rhythm (or meter, as poets call it), what about these examples?
These all sound jumbled. The first two names come across as jerky or lurchy, because they reverse the stress in consecutive words: STAR wood de SIGN and ver MONT CO ffee. You'd improve them by tweaking their second word to match the emphasis of the first: STAR wood GRAPH ics and ver MONT ca FE.
Now You Practice...
Rate these company names on their rhythm, then read my assessment and commentary:
Wells Fargo: This fits the pattern of State Farm and Best Buy, with one additional unstressed syllable, and the company therefore comes across as very strong and stable.
Cave Creek Coffee: This also echoes the rhythm of State Farm and Best Buy, extended with one more stressed syllable in a row and one additional unstressed one at the end. It too comes across as a muscular, sturdy and solid brand.
Market Intelligence: The space between words here doesn't erase the fact that this has the same pleasing double-triple rhythm as Epsilon Targeting and Enterprise Rent-A-Car: MAR ket in TELL i gence. Rhythmically, it works.
Volunteering International: Long, multi-syllabic words usually sound very clunky when combined, and that's certainly the case here. To improve a name like this, hunt for shorter substitutions for one or both long words. Or rework one of the multi-syllabic words so it has the same pattern of emphasis as the other one. Two mediocre fixes: World Volunteers or Resolute Volunteers. A better solution would be to scrap both long words in favor of a more creative naming approach, as with All the Saints.
Ronetsky Rapid Response: Although the three initial Rs have visual impact, the phonetic pattern in this company name does not come across to the ear. As with waves that cross each other from two conflicting directions, the rhythm does not resolve congenially. Eliminating the middle word so it becomes Ronetsky Response brings definite improvement, since it then sounds like a repeated pattern with the last syllable omitted: ro NET sky res PONSE.
Stuck on thinking up or choosing your new company or product name? Get help generating an impressively original business name or product name.
Copyright 2011 Marcia Yudkin. No reprinting or republishing without written permission.
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