Back when we started Pardot in 2007, we didn’t know any better and decided that our product needed a separate name from our company. After tons of brainstorming we finally arrived at a name that we liked and was available: Prospect Insight. Since Pardot didn’t mean anything to anyone, we felt that our product name needed to be more descriptive, hence the name. Also, being a little nerdy, we liked that Prospect Insight could be abbreviated PI, hence lots of jokes about pi (3.14159…).
After several years of trying to build brand equity in both the company Pardot and the product Prospect Insight, all our customers would call up and ask for help with Pardot, not Prospect Insight. Customers didn’t care what we called the product as everything was simply Pardot. Instead of trying to fight it, we embraced it and rebranded our product as Pardot. That is, the company and the product were one and the same. To this day, you can go to prospectinsight.com as well as pi.pardot.com and see remnants of a disconnected product name and company name.
For startups, the product and company name should be one and the same.
What else? What are some more thoughts on keeping the company and product name consistent?