Name Generation

Category: Healthcare System
Methods: Name Generation, Ideation, Name Testing

Name Generation


A large healthcare system was in the planning phase of developing several new types of outpatient facilities that would each provide a different set of services. This research was conducted to generate, iterate, and then quantitatively test names for each new facility type in order to select a final name for each facility.

Strategic Issues

The healthcare system wanted to use their strong core brand name as part of the name for each facility. Therefore, the selected names needed to fit with the core brand name and not have a negative impact on brand image.

Additionally, two of the facility types were somewhat similar, so there was a need to understand if consumers differentiated between the unique business model and features of each facility. If separate names were needed, the names must differentiate the facilities by simply and effectively communicating the unique features available at each facility type. However, if the consumers did not differentiate between the facilities, a single name was to be shared by several or even all of the facilities.

Research Objectives

The key objectives included:

  • Gathering reactions to the new patient facilities and understanding if consumers differentiated between them.
  • Developing a list of potential names and gathering reactions to them.
  • Understanding the reasons names were appealing and unappealing.
  • Identifying possible enhancements to current names.
  • Gauging the relative fit, uniqueness, memorability, and overall opinion of each name to identify the best name for each facility.

Research Design and Methods

To name the new facilities, a multiphased approach was used, including ideation sessions, qualitative focus groups, and quantitative research.

The first phase involved ideation with the Imaginators®, Decision Analyst’s proprietary consumer innovation community of highly creative individuals. In the ideation sessions, creative consumers were exposed to concept descriptions of the facilities and led through a series of creativity exercises to develop names for each. The ideation sessions produced more than 150 names per facility type. The client was provided the full set of names to review, including names that were generated by the Decision Analyst research team. The client then generated a shorter list of names per facility type that was used as stimuli in ensuing consumer focus groups.

In the second phase, some of the names developed in the initial ideation phase of research were evaluated by regular healthcare consumers in a more traditional qualitative focus group setting. The healthcare consumers came up with additional names, while also expanding on the names previously generated.

After some evaluation on the client end, 10 names per facility type were selected for testing in the quantitative research.

The quantitative survey was conducted among a representative sample of local healthcare consumers who were recruited from Decision Analyst’s American Consumer Opinion® panel. Each consumer evaluated (in randomized order) all of the potential names for each facility type.


The qualitative phase revealed that healthcare consumers saw the new facilities as distinct enough to warrant separate names. By analyzing key metrics such as uniqueness, appeal, fit, and memorability, the quantitative research concluded that there were two clear “winning” names for each facility, giving the client leeway to select a final name with confidence.

Marketing Research Services

If you would like more information on Medical Marketing Research, please contact Monisha Hatfield, Senior Vice President of Medical Research, ( or Bonnie Janzen, President (, or call 1-800-ANALYSIS (262-5974) or 1-817-640-6166.