Go Name Yourself is a deck of cards for coming up with great names for your business, project or product.
The deck was developed by Eli Altman and Rose Linke of A Hundred Monkeys, the Berkeley, California-based naming company. Rose and Eli have worked on well over 500 naming projects for big companies like Google and Target, startups like Eero and Okta, and small companies like Standard Deviant and Broad Daylight. The deck is designed by our friends Elana Schlenker and Mark Pernice from Out of Office. Our plan, and part of our budget, is to collaborate with a small group of illustrators to create a diverse set of visually inspiring cards.
One of the most common questions we get at A Hundred Monkeys is “Where do you actually find names?”
This is a question without a simple answer. We find names all over the place. We find names in books and online and in conversation. If there were one place good names came from, we probably wouldn’t be in business. Go Name Yourself shares many of the ways we actually come up with names.
How does Go Name Yourself work?
Similar to a deck of playing cards, Go Name Yourself has four suits: Preparation, Ideation, Lessons, and Vetting.
Preparation [15 cards]: Lay the groundwork for good naming. Preparation cards help you understand positioning, context, and audience so your name has purpose and you aren't just throwing around words you like and seeing what sticks.
Ideation [45 cards]: This is the core of the deck. Ideation cards share 45 different ways we've come up with names at A Hundred Monkeys. Instead of staring at a blank page waiting for brilliance, each card gives you a thought exercise that will help you come up with a wild smattering of names.
Lessons [15 cards]: What we've learned about naming over the years. Lessons deal with many of the misconceptions and traps that get people stuck while trying to come up with names.
Vetting [15 cards]: While coming up with great names is tough enough, making sure your name won't get you into trouble is another challenge entirely. Vetting cards help you take the names you've come up with and put them through the ringer--making sure you're in the clear legally, culturally, and practically.
Wait, didn't you write a book about this?
Correct you are. While Don’t Call It That walks through all the ins and outs of the naming process, Go Name Yourself is about coming up with cool names in as many ways as possible. There’s certainly some overlap here. Part of this is recognizing that people like to work and solve problems in different ways. Don’t Call It That is a step-by-step process. Go Name Yourself is a creative exercise. They can be used separately or together.
Risks and challenges
This is our second Kickstarter project. We learned a lot on the first go-around but there are some key differences between playing cards and books. Cards are lighter, smaller, and easier to ship. There are some interesting material choices we're weighing. Cards tend to be made of either coated paper or plastic. We want to find an environmentally agreeable way to produce the cards. This factors in weight, durability, recyclability, and materials.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)