Recent Work

Names I developed but haven't announced yet. I hope you like them.

Along with my recent launches of Mythic and Fond, these credentials and others can be found in the Operative Words online portfolio.

Virgin Voyages
A terrifically fun project developed in partnership with Chandelier Creative. Virgin Voyages will be reinventing what a cruise line can be. Setting sail in 2020.

Starry Internet
A radical new broadband internet service currently piloting in Boston. The Starry Station router is unlike any other. From the founder of Aereo.


Pop a handful of Plume pods into power outlets through your house to create a seamless mesh wifi network. Plume pods' industrial design has been widely acclaimed. I spoke briefly to NPR about the Plume name (my quote begins around 4:25).

Another home wifi mesh system I named, this one for Linksys. Also critically acclaimed.

Streetlane Homes
Vertically integrated, single family home rentals. Streetlane buys homes, renovates them, rents them, and manages them. Logo designed by the insanely-talented Jeff Carino of CLK Design.

Roofstock lets anyone invest in single-family rental properties. The first company to offer fractional ownership in SFR homes.

Protocol First
Unifies and harmonizes research and medical data from clinical trials.

The Wove band is the world's-first wearable, flexible display.

Wisewire is a marketplace for sharing, creating, exchanging, and purchasing educational content. Teachers who create cool stuff for their own classes can sell it to other teachers.

Future Forum
My first political naming project, Future Forum is the Democratic caucus addressing the needs of Millennials. Since Congressman Eric Swalwell engaged me for this assignment, we've worked together on many other verbal short-form assignments.

You should #probablyvote
The Millennial get-out-the-vote slogan for 2016.

Chemetry makes production of certain chemicals vastly safer and with a smaller carbon footprint.

Trove works with companies who want to transform health, the climate and the planet through food.
Founded by former White House chef and Senior Policy Advisor for Nutrition, Sam Kass. Here's his Ted Talk about the interplay of childhood nutrition and education.

Bootstrap Small-Batch Whiskey
Made by New Deal Distillery of Portland, OR.

How to Name an Innovation (the movie)

Design legend, Don Norman, honored me with an invitation to speak at UC San Diego Design Lab about naming innovations. My talk specifically focused on innovative product descriptors, the part of a name that establishes what the product’s category is, such as “smartphone” or “universal remote”.

Why is a product descriptor important? If you're inventing a “World’s First” product, the invention’s product descriptor should establish a category all its own. But naming a unique product category is not always easy.

In my presentation, “Naming the New”, I detail a best-practice process to develop an innovation’s product descriptor. Real-world project examples for Quell and Cinder illustrate how it works. The video is an hour long, but you'll probably learn a lot if you get through the whole thing.       

If the topic of novel product descriptors interests you — and how could it not?! — read my other posts on the topic, Describe Different and The Names of MIT Media Lab


Announcing: FOND

A company name should reflect a single, big idea. By rising above the functional and descriptive, a name that speaks to a higher-order idea can endure and inspire forever.

At one time, the name AnyPerk made sense to its founders, as it describes functionally that they provide a range of perks to employees of their corporate customers. That is technically true: AnyPerk does provide product discounts and other perks.

But they are really more than that. The company had long-embraced a single, big idea to define their brand: “The employee happiness company.”

As a name, AnyPerk says nothing about this noble reason for being. Moreover, as the company expanded beyond perks per se to also offering rewards and other benefits, AnyPerk was limiting.

It had to change. 

I was honored with the invitation to create a new name for the company.

For six weeks, the senior team at AnyPerk and I weighed the relative merits of 140 names that cleared preliminary global trademark screening.

And today, AnyPerk, “the employee happiness company,” announced their new name: Fond.

As a single, big idea, the name Fond will remain always relevant to the company and their customers. It will endure even as the company evolves. It’s easy to like.

I couldn’t be happier for them.

For their internal launch event, Fond asked me about the name. Here's what I said:

Fond's blog has a post detailing their rebranding. Their VP of Marketing, Michael Stapleton, offered these kind words:

"We're thrilled with Fond! Anthony did a wonderful job uncovering this name that was remarkably untaken. It so clearly reinforces our mission of 'helping companies build places where employees love to work,' but isn't an obvious, too-on-the-nose choice. It also leaves room for the brand flexibility we need as we grow."
Congratulations to my wonderful clients at Fond on their successful launch!