I’m often asked by customers, partners and others involved in the wider virtualization and cloud management ecosystem where we got the name Embotics®. Today I’ll tell the story, and provide some resources that I hope will be helpful to anyone making the same decision.
We were starting up in 2006, coincidentally the same year Amazon AWS launched, and knew we needed a name that was:
1. Meaningful in the market we were pursuing
2. Short enough to roll off the tongue
3. Not going to violate someone else’s intellectual property rights
4. Available to register as a .com
Sounds easy, right? Well, until you’ve been through the exercise, you won’t appreciate how difficult it can be! Let’s break down the name Embotics against these four criteria:
Making It Meaningful
The founding team had its roots in policy-based systems management and automation technology, often referred to as autonomic computing back in the early 2000s, but saw that the growing trend of server virtualization held the future. We believed that virtualized data centers, the genesis of private and hybrid clouds, operated by future enterprises and service providers would need to be self-managing and self-regulating. Software controlled automation would be the heart of this effort – what we now refer to as the Software Defined Data Center, or SDDC.
Given the accelerated rate of change, virtual data centers would require purpose-built systems management automation and orchestration platforms to monitor, analyze, plan and execute the delivery and governance of IT services. Today, this type of software, including our own Embotics® vCommander™ is often called a Cloud Management Platform (CMP) by Gartner and other analysts.
John Kaldeway was doing some freelance marketing consulting for us at the time, and suggested the phrase “Embedded Bot”.
Short and Sweet
Okay, “Embedded Bot” feels a bit like the start of a tongue twister. Collectively, we decided to shorten the name to Embotics, a name that is true to its meaning, but has a sharper sound.
Now that we were really getting somewhere, it was time for the due diligence. We search Google and Yahoo extensively. We also queried the trademark database operated by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), to make sure we were in the clear to proceed.
Without a doubt, the hardest part of naming a business today is finding an open .com name. Domains covering every word in the dictionary were all registered many years ago, so you either have to invent a new word, conjugate or combine two or more words, or buy a domain name at a premium from someone else who owns the rights. Of course, we ended up going with our invented word (we’re still hoping to get into the dictionary, though). We knew from our online searches that nothing was coming up, and confirmed this with our domain registrar, scooping up our .com right away.
If you’re an entrepreneur or founding team member in the existing early days of a startup, and you’re looking for more structured guidance on choosing a company name, here are some resources you may find useful:
– How to Choose the Best Name for Your Business – Inc.com
– 10 Ways to Come Up with a Killer Name for your Company – BusinessInsider.com
– How to Choose the Best Name for your Company – Forbes.com
– 10 Business Name Generators to Help you Create your Brand – Shopify.com