Invented domains are an alternative to brand names based on keywords. You won’t find them in the dictionary but the good ones are easy to pronounce when you read them and easy to spell when you hear them in a conversation.
They are also short. The average invented company name is five or six letters long. Some are shorter. A few are longer. But very rarely are the good ones more than seven or eight letters.
Now I’ll add a fourth quality to that list of attributes. They feel familiar. The best invented names feel like they are a real word or should be one. For this reason successful startups often select names that contain elements of existing dictionary words, slang terms or common phrases.
You’ll see what I mean when you look at the invented names of these 2016 unicorn companies with matching dot-com domain names:
– It contains the term, fax, which started as slang for facsimile and later became a dictionary word. Right away you get the idea that this a company dealing with professional services. It’s actually a Chinese startup that specializes in financial services.
– This name borrows from the word ‘therapy’ in order to convey that it’s in the blood testing niche of the medical industry.
– Here’s a shortened version of the word ‘titanium’ being used by a software company that specializes in IT data search.
– This one sounds like a slang version of the word ‘power’ and conveys an image of something fast and strong. It’s the name of a UK mobile payments company that ran out of ‘powa’ and had a financial collapse earlier this year.
– Here’s a hack of the word ‘house’ and it’s an apt brand for a Palo Alto, California start-up specializing in home design.
– A New York company that took the common slang term for doctor and echoed it with the made up sound, Zoc to create a memorable name for a health professional search platform.
– This one’s a combination of the word ‘apt’ and the word ‘us.’ An appropriate brand for a revenue management startup catering to e-commerce ventures.
– Elements of the phrase ‘blip on the radar’ combine to create this fun sounding brand for a mobile augmented reality startup.
The best invented names later become household words. For example, Google started out as an invented name but became so ubiquitous it’s now listed in the dictionary as both a noun and a verb.
What do you think makes a great invented name? What’s the best invented name you own? Let us know in the comment section below.
Some righteous brandable auctions at NameJet this week: