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Using The Internet For Bandname Research

By • May 5th, 2008 • Category: 1 - How To Get Your Band Online

When it comes to choosing a name for your band, it makes sense to avoid creating competition for yourself. The Internet is a great research tool, particularly for finding out if and where particular phrases are currently in use…

Even if you’ve already registered your bandname’s dot com domain, that doesn’t mean there’s no other band out there with the same name.

To avoid potential legal problems later on, it’s a good idea to ensure that there are no other bands already using your name. As is usual with the law, ignorance is no excuse: you can’t just say you never heard of the other band before.

The Irish band ‘The Frames DC’ were originally called simply ‘The Frames’, until another band called ‘The Frames’ threatened to sue them – so they added the DC and continued on their merry way. Dan Snaith of Caribou is also very familiar with this sort of thing, as his band used to be called Manitoba until someone else… well, you get the idea.

Here’s how to avoid a similar problem by making sure you’re the original.

How To Make Sure Your Band Doesn’t Exist Already

If you search for “my band name” in a search engine (with your actual band’s name in place of “my band name”, but keeping the inverted commas), you will see a selection of pages from the Internet that contain that exact phrase. If no results come back, then you’re probably safe – and you can give yourself credit for having a healthy (or particularly twisted) imagination.

If some results come back, but none are related to music, then you’re probably okay too. However, it might be worthwhile making another couple of searches just to be on the safe side.

Try typing these into Google:

  • “my band name” music
  • “my band name” album
  • “my band name” gig
  • “my band name” single

If none of these results indicate a band is using your name already, then you’re probably good to go.

Choosing A New Band Name – SEM Style

If you don’t have a name for your band yet, here’s an idea for tapping into a pre-existing traffic stream and giving your band’s website a ready-made source of visitors.

If you don’t really have any strong opinions about what your band should call itself, why not do a bit of keyword research and name yourself after a search term?

If your band name just happens to be a phrase that gets a steady stream of daily traffic, doesn’t have too much competition and is somehow thematically related to the world of music, then you could regard yourself as being very lucky indeed.

Or… you could deliberately choose a band name that meets all these criteria.

Not very rock’n’roll, perhaps, but a lot of the stuff people search for every day makes for extremely interesting reading. Keywords can be surprisingly inspiring – many of the search engine queries I see every day would make much better band names than the old ‘definite article plus plural noun’ formula, for instance.

Alternatively, you could use this approach when naming albums or songs. If a traffic term catches your eye as being particularly unusual or interesting, why not take advantage of it?

If you don’t know how to find traffic terms (phrases that people are searching for every day) then you should have a look at my introductory post on keyword selection.

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is a Search Marketing Consultant, Musician, Producer and Author.
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2 Responses »

  1. […] I’ve written another post that provides some tips on using the Internet to help you choose a new band name. […]

  2. […] on the Linkdisco site you can find some suggestions about using Web search to find a band name. This technique is well worth considering because it can reveal a name that not only is interesting […]

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