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In this day and age of people giving back to their communities, it is refreshing to find companies doing the same. Corporate images are changing for the better as companies of all sizes find ways to “go green” or help kids or even third world countries. And, of course, these outreach and environmental programs need memorable names too.

Bridgestone is one such forward-thinking company. Their vision of a waste-free tire industry is directly supported with their TIRES4WARD program. When Bridgestone America sells a new tire, they ensure that a used tire is recycled or reused. It was important to them that the name of this program was as innovative as their approach … not just another tired, “green” name. NameStormers developed a full menu choices from which they selected TIRES4WARD.

Another company, Innovari, a leading innovator in the power utility industry, developed a new nonprofit program that would benefit schools and kids in local communities. They chose “Plugged Into Kids” after evaluating many of our other alternatives as one of the more engaging names.

“Plugged into Kids™ (is) a nonprofit organization that provides funding to other non-profits tackling the biggest challenges facing children. Not only do we make it easy for utilities and their customers to contribute, but we make it a smart financial decision. Plugged into Kids participating utilities and their customers opportunities to fund:

  • Community Programs, including science centers, museums, recreational centers, educational facilities, and more.
  • Educational Programs, including computer labs, after-school programs, and tutoring.
  • Community Awareness and Outreach Programs, including health and wellness, children’s hospitals, environmental awareness, and even energy awareness.”

Other company initiatives, like Toyota’s Eco-VAS (Vehicle Assessment System) might leave you thinking “what the heck?” or the Ford Sustai nability program might elicit a yawn. Then there are more technical names like the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) or the Global eSustainability Initiative (GeSI) which might sound a bit esoteric to many.

We believe that social or environmental initiatives with more inspired names, like Chevron’s Human Energy®, Starwood Hotels’ Check Out for Children™ or Bank of America’s Green Bonds are likely to generate more buzz. Other companies we work with participate in programs with longer names like Cell Phones for Soldiers, the Global Water Challenge or Clear into the Future® that are more suggestive and can “hit the ground running” without much of an ad budget. Even names like Ritz-Carlton’s Volunteaming which take two familiar words and combine them in a new but understandable way can help differentiate this program from the crowd. And another popular naming trend is to combine a brand name with a single word following it, like Hyatt Earth or Hyatt Force. While this style of name is not as descriptive as most of the others cited above, it leverages the masterbrand while keeping the name short and punchy.

A great program with a great name can give companies a big PR boost in this climate of social change and environmental activism.

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