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Match your brand name to the company you want to be

Posted on Categories BrandonomicsTags

To be successful, your company needs to "dress for the job you want" by matching your naming strategy to your larger brand strategy. David Skinner, CEO at KCA, talks about how their name change demonstrates who they want to be as a company.

Robin: Hello and welcome to this edition of Brandonomics, an inside look at top brands and their marketing strategies. I am Robin Tooms, VP of Strategy at Savage Brands, and my guest today is David Skinner, CEO at KCA. So David, welcome to Brandonomics.

David: Thank you, great to be here.

Robin: Well, David, you’re at KCA, but I mention that name only because that wasn’t the name of the company when you started there. So tell us a little bit – why did y’all change the name of the company?

David: That’s a good question. So KCA was originally K Carpenter Associates. Kevin was at my previous company my COO – now I work for him – that’s kind of a funny little twist of fate. But anyway, when he started the company, he named it after himself. I said, that’s great if it’s you and 2 or 3 people, and you want a little small consulting firm, but if you really want to grow it into something that’s large and very marketable, you kind of need to change the name. And after a few bouts and consternations and other things late night, he finally kind of gave in. What we ended up with was shortening it to KCA – basically the initials – and we saw a lot of positive feedback from that, starting with the employees because now we had a new URL and a new email address. Everybody was tired of their full name @kcarpenterassociates.

Robin: It’s an awkward name, yeah.

David: Yeah, it was a little confusing and it’s a long URL.

Robin: So from a practical side it helped quite a bit, but you also mentioned that the kind of origin of this was because you wanted to grow as a company; you didn’t want to stay as this small startup company, and that name change kind of helped facilitate that.

David: Correct. There are plenty of companies out there that are somebody’s name, and some of those are, of course, large companies: you’ve got J.C. Penney, McKenzie and others. But most of the time when you see a consulting firm and it’s a person’s name, you think it’s sort of a guy and 2 or 3 minions. So I didn’t want that to be the perception. We’re already larger than that, and the goal is to be kind of a 100-million-dollar consulting firm in the next 5 years. So to do that, we needed a name that reflected it.

Robin: Yeah, thank you. Matching the brand name with the company that you know you’re going to grow to be, it’s perfect advice.

David: Right.

Robin: This has been another edition of Brandonomics, an inside look at top brands and their marketing strategies.


KCA, formerly K Carpenter Associates, is a team of expert consultants providing strategic insights and great results to clients in the energy, technology and legal industries. KCA helps clients create smart, robust strategies to solve tough business challenges.

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