Thought Leadership with Mitchell Levy and Michael Procopio, Episode 32: July 26, 2014

Thought Leadership with Mitchell and Michael

In this episode, Mitchell and Michael hang out with #ThoughtLeader Alexandra Watkins, recognized expert on business names and owner and CEO of the company Eat My Words ( which Mitchell “absolutely adores”. Mitchell also describes her as someone who really knows what marketing is and who is not ashamed or shy in sharing her opinion. Alexandra defines a #ThoughtLeader as someone who is an authority in their area, not just an authority in their minds. Her or she has to be not only an authority in their area but has to be really well-respected and followed not just by their customers or advocates, but by competitors and peers. For Alexandra, a #ThoughtLeader has to have an original thought which he or she expresses without fear even if it is contrary to popular opinion.

Alexandra WatkinsIn the interview, Alexandra defines a good brand name by expounding on her company’s tagline: “A name should make you smile, instead of scratch your head.” People like names that they understand and easily get because it makes them feel smart. A good name is something that does not baffle or confuse or challenge people enough to make them feel stupid. Alexandra explains the S.M.I.L.E. and S.C.R.A.T.C.H test that is available on her company’s website and which is a simple evaluation test to determine if you have a good brand name. Alexandra describes the test to be anything but complicated; it is not a scientific process but just basic common sense. SMILE is an acronym for the 5 qualities of a good brand name, namely – Suggestive, Meaningful, Imagery, Legs and Emotional connection. On the other hand, SCRATCH is an acronym that stands for the qualities of a brand name that is going to cause problems, and Alexandra says when your company name has even just one of these qualities, you must already consider changing it. She also points out that in today’s world; it is no longer too hard to change names because you can use social media and the Internet to spread the information about your name change. Alexandra’s best advice is that when you are already struggling with the current name you have, begin considering changing your name.

For #ThoughtLeaders, Alexandra’s advice is not to use your own names for your brand because that kind of brand name will not say anything about you and you don’t want to dilute your brand because you have namesakes. One example is Happy About ( which is a lot easier to remember than     

To learn more about Thought Leadership and how it can help you be successful, subscribe to the channel:

Here are a couple of aha moments from the episode. See more in the “Aha Moments from Thought Leader Life” books available in the THiNKaha App:
• #ThoughtLeaders think their way is not always the only way and shares great thoughts of others, not just their own. @Eatmywords
• Annoying names are the ones that frustrate the customer. @Eatmywords
• Why should you make your name challenging for people? Just because it’s creative doesn’t always mean it’s good! @Eatmywords
• Using a personal name for your brand name is not necessarily a good choice. @michaelprocopio

Join us 11 am PT / 2 pm ET / 7 pm GMT on Saturday every week. The show blog is Thought Leader Life.

Any comments or suggestions for the show please send them. Thank you for listening and if you like what you hear, please leave a review on iTunes! 

This episode was sponsored, in part, by, helping experts become thought leaders.

You can connect with Mitchell at, @HappyAbout on Twitter, or join his Thought Leadership Best Practices Group on LinkedIn; and with Michael at, on Twitter:@MichaelProcopio; or LinkedIn:

Get this podcast:

FIR Community on Google+Share your comments or questions about this podcast, or suggestions for future podcasts, in the online FIR Podcast Community on Google+.

You can also send us instant voicemail via SpeakPipe, right from the FIR website. Or, call the Comment Line at +1 415 895 2971 (North America), +44 20 3239 9082 (Europe), or Skype: fircomments. You can tweet us: @FIRpodcast. And you can email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). If you wish, you can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

To receive all podcasts in the FIR Podcast Network, subscribe to the “everything” RSS feed. To stay informed about occasional FIR events (eg, FIR Live), sign up for FIR Update email news.

FIR presents Thought Leadership with Mitchell and Michael is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information:

Posted by Michael Procopio on 07/26 at 08:55 PM






Remember my personal information

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Submit the word you see below:

<< Back to main