THE BOOK OF LISTS: The 10 Worst agency names

1. Isobel

Launched by the ex-Banks Hoggins O'Shea/FCB management, this venture has been accused by Campaign of being the most inappropriately named start-up ever. How wrong we were. The explanation for the name is not only valid but also rather sweet. Apparently, three of the four founding partners have daughters with Isobel in their name (see above). Aaaah bless.

2. Uncle Terry

Following Farm's long tradition of giving its affiliated agencies strange names - not to mention its own odd moniker - comes Uncle Terry. The agency, which was set up to handle Farm's below-the-line accounts, joins the agency's media planning and buying division, which is, of course, called Monkey. Oh, now it all makes sense.

3. BoyMeetsGirl

When it eventually launches, this will be the product of Andy Law and Kate Stanners' relaunching and rebranding of Springer & Jacoby. The idea was to give the agency a name that replicated the electric feeling you get when you meet that special someone. But so far the agency is so lacking in any kind of spark it has failed to get off the ground.

4. Vizeum

Affectionately known to those in the industry with an infantile sense of humour as "Gizium" or "The wizards of wank" (see Best Diary Stories). Don't suppose they thought of that one when deciding on the name. It was meant to be the closest they could get to "vision", but unfortunately it's also a cross between "vision" and "tedium".

5. Now Wash Your Hands

The mind really does boggle. What possible reason could a digital agency have for this bizarre excuse for a name? Maybe it's part of a subliminal message to promote cleanliness among the grubby-handed members of the advertising community ... or maybe it took its cue from the wizards at Vizeum.

6. An Agency Called England

Maybe these guys have an identity crisis or perhaps they just want to proclaim their "Englishness"? Whatever the reason, this agency needs to face up to the fact it is based in a place called Leeds - which makes it all the more ridiculous and more than worthy of a place in the top ten.

7. Davison Smiley-Jones Snoxell Wass

Doesn't exactly roll off the tongue, does it? So sticking wherever possible with the shortened version, DSJSW - not exactly concise either - is undoubtedly the best idea. This is perhaps the best example of a name created by ego-blinded founders unable to foresee what their monstrosity will look like on business cards. If we ever wrote about it, the headlines would be a nightmare, too.

8. Kitcatt Nohr Alexander Shaw

Give us a break. Mind you, this one is quite endearing, if only because it has a very nice rhyming element to it. Other than that, it's just as egotistical and disastrous as the last one.

9. Elephants Can't Jump

People have almost been sectioned thanks to this peculiar choice. Imagine, if you will, a client trying to explain how Elephants Can't Jump has been added to its brand consultancy roster with a brief to work at a strategic level across consumer and business activity. Confusion, misunderstanding and madness swiftly ensues all round.

10. Elvis

There is a tendency for above-the-line agencies simply to keep their own name and tag a word on the end when launching below-the-line spin-offs. While, more often than not, that creates terrible convoluted names, what Miles Calcraft Briginshaw Duffy have opted for is surely worse.

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