Monday, 1 April 2013

How to choose a name for your website

Open the champagne. It's a website!

What shall I call it?

No, I have not had a baby. The only thing I am going to give birth to, soon, is a website about me. And I am trying to choose a catchy name for the eponymous website that will tell the world what a wonderful trainer / facilitator / coach I am. You see the problem? I have now used three words to describe myself, and they don’t explain what I do, or why you should read any more about me.

A catchy strapline

My name is OK. There are not too many Edward Kellows in the world competing for the attention of a search engine. What I need is an elegant strapline that will tell people how creative, flexible and fun I am to work with: how I always deliver on outcomes; and how I help people to discover stuff that they never dreamt they could do, and later helped them to transform their company / relationship / life. And, despite, or because of, my success, I am totally authentic and trustworthy, thanks to my deeply held, and hard won personal values. I sound so good, I think I might even hire myself.

What do I do in one sentence?
How do I explain what I do in one sentence? I google a few trainers and coaches I know, and they use words like facilitate, learning, and change. That’s what I do! I facilitate learning and change. So I think I should definitely say ‘facilitate’ because ‘facilitate’ is a verb, and a verb spells action, and what all my potential clients want is someone who can make change happen.

“Words, words, words” Hamlet II.2

But wait a moment. Everyone who works in learning and development facilitates change. I need to tell people what’s special about me. So, I am creative, and I am fun. I give people space to work things out for themselves. And the reason I do that, is I genuinely believe that change only happens when people get comfortable with who they are, rather than trying to be someone else. I learned that from Mr. Beisser on my coaching course, though I think I knew it already. And the reason why I think THAT is important is that I believe change will only be sustainable if people are given a chance to work things out for themselves. When they do that people tend to take more responsibility for their actions, see?

 Edward Kellow: Fifty Shades of Learning (It was late, I was desperate, OK?)

So I invent some straplines that I think explain what I do, while hinting at my creativity, energy and dynamism:

Edward Kellow: making learning happen (dynamic!)
Edward Kellow: making it happen (sexier, but what do I make happen?)
Collaborative Learning: Steps towards sustainable futures (Too much ‘togetherness’?)
Curious Futures: facilitating learning and leadership (hmm, I like this one)
Collaborative Futures: facilitating sustainable futures (This has a ‘does what is says on the tin’ feel)
Edward Kellow: Leaning into learning (oh dear, no).

And I google them, and each and every one is taken by somebody else. Even ‘Curious Futures’, which is the one I like most, because I have done a lot of thinking about the value of curiosity (see my blog!), and I want my strapline to ‘Lean in’ to the future. Finally, when ‘Fifty Shades of Learning’ pops into my head, I give up.

What about “Edward Kellow: facilitating collaborative learning and leadership”?

Maybe it’s not so bad after all.