brand naming, taglines, and storytelling

River + Wolf is a New York City based naming and verbal identity firm that believes branding begins with words. Moreover, we think language is one of the most powerful means for building, organizing, and communicating a brand’s voice and vision.

Whether working with established brands or start-ups, our goal is always the same: to communicate your brand’s promise in language that informs, inspires, and activates.

 
Undisclosed
 
Undisclosed
 
2 - 9
 Founded
2014
Show all +
New York, NY
headquarters
  • River + Wolf
    605 West 113 Suite 2
    New York, NY 10025
    United States
    212-222-5111

Portfolio

Key clients: 

We work nationally and internationally with clients of every size--from start-ups to Fortune 500s. River + Wolf also provides brand naming and storytelling services to branding, design, advertising, and media studios.   

Reviews

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Naming for Mobile Gaming Company

"Margaret was very thorough, thoughtful, and she put a comprehensively creative touch on their process."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Aug. - Oct. 2017
Project summary: 

River + Wolf brainstormed naming ideas for three online games and made recommendations based on branding, context, and goals.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Seattle, Washington
Ashley Davidson
Senior Marketing Manager, Big Fish Games
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Their name ideas dominated the top-20 list that was later generated by focus groups and consumer research. River + Wolf was easy to reach, thoughtful, and very helpful.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I am a senior marketing manager at Big Fish Games and we publish free to play mobile games on devices.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with River + Wolf?

When it comes to new games, the effort and focus that it takes to come up with a good name was something that we were having trouble finding internally.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

They provided us with what they call homework, which was essentially a worksheet that was very easy for us to complete, informing them on the brand behind the game, the key consumer benefits of the game, and what we were trying to achieve in the name. They took that information along with some visual reference and came up with a couple of ideas for directional themes to take their naming process in. We had a few follow-up conversations with them to be sure they were going down the right path and had everything that they needed to start brainstorming. And finally, they came back to us with a full presentation and their rationale for each one. They went through that process for three games.

What is the team composition?

Margaret Wolfson [Founder & Chief Creative, River + Wolf] was our main point of contact. There was one other person on some of the calls, but we didn't interface with him as much.

How did you come to work with River + Wolf?

We originally found them on your site, Clutch.co. A combination of the reviews and their area of expertise got us interested, and then when we did an RFP (request for proposal) with five different agencies, they were the most impressive.

How much have you invested with them?

We spent in the range of $20,000 to $50,000, but we benefited from the economies of scale of doing the three naming projects in a row.

What is the status of this engagement?

The project began in August 2017 and was completed in about eight weeks, with 2-3 weeks needed for each game.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

We did some focus group research, which generated a top-20 list of potential names, and about 80% of those names originated out of their brainstorming work.

How did River + Wolf perform from a project management standpoint?

They were great. There's definitely a need to give them good information so that we would get good results. That due diligence, providing insights, branding, and context, is a necessary part of the process. With that said, it is a collaborative process, but they take ownership of the brainstorm and the presentation of ideas.

What did you find most impressive about them?

I really enjoyed working with Margaret. She was very thorough, thoughtful, and she put a comprehensively creative touch on their process. She really thought through the experience the end consumer will have with the name. She was also very responsive and asked us good questions.

Are there any areas they could improve?

I don't think so. They offered us more services, but we didn't have the budget for them.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They've followed through on every deadline they've set and honored our timing constraints.
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    It's average pricing.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Naming for Travel Subscription-Based Company

"We’re excited about our relationship and the work they’ve done because we’re happy with the result."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
June - July 2017
Project summary: 

River + Wolf led two naming projects for a travel startup, the first involving the creation of their company's name, and another that launched months later involving the naming of their customer-only brand.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Las Vegas, Nevada
Jimmy Ezzell
President, Wonder 7 Global
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The new names created by River + Wolf have already set up the startup for success as they look to expand and develop an international business. Working with River + Wolf is an enjoyable and educational experience as they walk you through the linguistics of what it means to make a quality name.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

Wonder 7 Global is a travel subscription-based company, with a members-only travel website. We also have what’s called Wonder Escapes, which are curated trips unique to our members. I’m the president.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with River + Wolf?

We needed help naming our startup company.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We did two projects with Margaret [Founder, River + Wolf] and her team. The first was creating our name. She came up with Wonder 7 Global and helped us go through that process. Our chairman of the board, myself, and other major executives loved it. After that project was done, I came back to her for our customer-only program here in North America. She helped us create that name as well.

We spent some time going through different styles and what we were looking for. Margaret used a questionnaire that gave a good sense, a good feel, and even industry competitor names, as well as doing an extensive interview. The team then put together a presentation deck with names in different categories and styles. We narrowed those down to the next batch. After that, another gentleman did a pre-check for trademarks to see if there were any major problems. Once that went through and some of them got mocked up, we chose from a few finalists. We decided on the name we wanted, then worked with the trademark guys to move forward.

What is the team dynamic?

I worked with Margaret.

How did you come to work with River + Wolf?

I vetted out 3–5 top-rated marketing firms in different parts of the company and started interviewing them. It was close, but there was a connection with Margaret and the way she explained the process.

How much have you invested with them?

We've spent between $8,000–$10,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together in June 2017 until July 2017.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

It was a great process for us. We love both names. As we’re starting to prelaunch, I introduced the brand and the company to 75 of our top distributors who loved the name as well. We’ve created a nice brand and a logo with it. I told Margaret initially that the biggest thing for us was to make sure these names would be legacy names. We feel they’re both that way.

How did River + Wolf perform from a project management standpoint?

They’re phenomenal. I've dealt with many vendors, and Margaret was so pleasant to work with and so quick to respond, even on the weekends, since we’re an international, multi-national company. I have no issues or complaints with their project management.

What did you find most impressive about them?

I highly recommend them. We’re excited about our relationship and the work they’ve done because we’re happy with the result. We have two phenomenal brand names that we can build a massive company around. As a startup, we knew our brand and name were important, so we didn’t mind making the investment. We were impressed with Margaret's process, her responsiveness, and the way she handled her group coming up with the names. She empowered us and helped educate us from a linguistics standpoint, understanding how a name sounds, the syllables, and comparing it to other names and brands inside our space. She did an excellent job and helped us make good decisions.

Are there any areas they could improve?

We had such a good experience. That’s why I picked her again. I did a project with her less than two months later with our other brand. If I ever start another company, I’ll go to her and invest in the process again.

5.0
Overall Score We’re grateful for the relationship, the experience, and their expertise and knowledge in making sure we started our company in the right way.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They’re prompt and execute the needed deadlines.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    The value of what we got was well worth the investment.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    Excellent quality and service.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    If anyone ever needed a referral, I would personally give them one.

Naming for Real Estate Brokerage

“The feedback for the brokerage name itself has been amazing—everyone loves it.”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Less than $10,000
 
Jan. - Feb. 2017
Project summary: 

River + Wolf created a unique and evocative name with high recall value. Initially, the team came up with over a dozen creative options. They are now handling legal requirements for the trademark.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Ventura, California
Founder, The Address
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

River + Wolf provided detailed descriptions of each name option, which showed the team’s creativity and branding expertise. They also excelled at project management and communication.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I am the founder of and broker for a real estate company.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with River + Wolf?

We needed a name for our new brokerage—ideally one that we could nationally trademark.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

The process started with a phone call. We then filled out a document that detailed the different naming styles we liked, our key communications and other relevant information. Using this as their blueprint, River + Wolf developed an amazing presentation of widely varying names. It was my first time working with a firm for thinking of a business name, so I didn’t know what to expect. The names were presented in a PowerPoint deck, one name per slide. Each name came with their rationale behind the name. We then selected a number of names for trademark screening.

The name we ended up selecting is “The Address”—a perfect fit with our interest in buying and selling quality homes, and the all-important concept of “location, location, location.”

How did you come to work with River + Wolf?

This was my first collaboration with a naming agency. I didn’t even know that this service existed. I found River + Wolf through a Google search. I believe they responded to a thread we started about real estate and brokerage names. I went to their website and spoke at length to Margaret [Founder and Chief Creative] before committing.

How much have you invested with River + Wolf?

The cost was $10,000 and it was worth every penny.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with River + Wolf in January 2017. The name development was completed in less than a month, excluding the trademark registration process.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

I can’t mention any metrics because we’re a startup; we didn’t have a tangible history before the naming project. The feedback for the brokerage name itself has been amazing — everyone loves it. People immediately grasp how it ties in with what I wanted for the company.

How did River + Wolf perform from a project management standpoint?

Margaret was my main point of contact. They exceeded expectations in terms of project management. For status updates, we mainly communicated through email and phone.

Are there any areas River + Wolf could improve?

Not within my experience.

5.0
Overall Score They came up with an amazing product.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They kept and exceeded the set dates.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    In my opinion, I got more than I paid for. However, I don’t know where River + Wolf ranks on a professional level.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    River + Wolf exceeded expectations.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I mention River + Wolf to anyone who has questions about our name.

Naming for Multidiscipline Engineering Firm

"I can send ideas and design concepts to [them], and receive very relevant comments for what we’re trying to accomplish."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Mar. - May 2017
Project summary: 

River + Wolf conducted surveys, performed research and provided 70 possible new names for an engineering firm. They assisted with the patent and trademark, and gave advice on designs from a separate team.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Springville, New York
Kevin Opp
Director of Marketing, RJR Engineering
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

River + Wolf is easy to collaborate with due to their superb project management and straightforward communication. The team is attentive to the ultimate goals of a project and provides diverse possible solutions. They’re transparent, available for helpful discussions and responsive to feedback.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

RJR Engineering is a SDVOSB (Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business) multidiscipline engineering firm which also offers civil materials testing, non-destructive examinations and field inspection services for bulk storage tanks, on behalf of industrial clients. My role is director of marketing and business development, and I’ve been with the company since January 2017.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with River + Wolf?

One of the goals which came out of our leadership meeting in 2016 was the need to rename the company based on a number of internal changes, which included new service offerings, a new office opening, a change in culture, and a focus on growth. I was hired to lead the renaming and rebranding efforts, as well as drive the firm’s business development process. Renaming the firm, was not a task we could handle in-house, so I needed to find experts who guide us through this process. RJR is a unique firm, so I needed to find the right naming company to match our unique naming problem.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Before we ever got started, Margaret very clearly defined the process we would follow. And as such, we knew upfront our responsibilities and the proposed timeline.

River + Wolf sent us an initial information gathering survey, in order to define who we were and our needs. I distributed the form internally to members of the leadership team. I collected their responses and forwarded them to River + Wolf. From there, they did some analysis, distilling the information into one creative brief, which was returned to us for approval.

Over a period of two weeks, River + Wolf came up with over 70 potential names for us to consider. From those, we narrowed the field to between 20 and 30. We forwarded those to River + Wolf, who gave them to their on-staff attorney, who made an initial review of what was available, what was potentially available, and what was not available. We narrowed that refined list down again to 10-12 names, out of which we chose two, one available and one potentially available.

We had some internal discussions, settled on one name, and sent it again to the lawyer, who ran an initial test and told us it was good to go. He was then hired to file all the necessary documents with the US Patent and Trademark Office.

Later this summer we will be launching the new name of our company, “The Encorus Group.”

How did you come to work with River + Wolf?

I did an extensive review of River + Wolf’s website and clients, but also looked at other firms, primarily on the West Coast, as it seemed, much naming and product identity activity was happening there. I contacted most of the naming firms or our ‘radar’, and in the end, the communication I had with River + Wolf was very encouraging and led to us contracting them for the work. Their responsiveness was one factor in our decision process. I emailed and called River + Wolf, and received replies within a few hours, which was huge to me. When I started this process, I contacted a number of naming firm, in order to get information about the firm and see if we were a good fit, and getting a callback or email reply was painful. Margaret’s responsiveness was phenomenal, and I liked working with one point person. She was always there, attentive to questions, and I liked working that way.

How much have you invested with River + Wolf?

The cost of their work was around $10,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We contracted River + Wolf in March 2017. We have just greenlighted the lawyer to file our name with the US PTO at the beginning of June, and River + Wolf’s portion of this had been finished two weeks prior, in mid-May.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

We haven’t even launched internally within our own organization, which we plan to do next week. The grassroots surveys and feedback which we received from colleagues in the design industry has been very positive.

How did River + Wolf perform from a project management standpoint?

Margaret was our main contact. She and I were in almost constant daily communication for a couple of weeks. She has been phenomenal in providing feedback. I can send ideas and design concepts to her, and receive very relevant comments for what we’re trying to accomplish. In this regard, it’s been very helpful. They did everything they promised to do, and within the schedule given.

What did you find most impressive about River + Wolf?

Much of it has to do with the responsiveness and attentiveness to our specific goals. The size of the firm works well with us, since we’re also a small business. I haven’t felt like a number in the queue of a designer. I have dealt with the woman who owns the firm, as opposed to some junior account executive, and it’s been important to know that I have access to someone in-the-know.

Are there any areas River + Wolf could improve?

I can’t think of any negative aspects around the service we were provided. Everything was delivered on schedule.

5.0
Overall Score I’m very pleased with the service, the responsiveness, the price, creativity and thought behind the process.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    Everything we agreed to in terms of calendars and schedules was delivered as per our agreement.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Having talked to a number of naming agencies with a similar scope to River + Wolf, I can say that they’ve provided exemplary service for the fee we paid.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    I appreciated the diversity of the solutions given by River + Wolf. Rather than giving me 70 names initially, without organization or forethought, a lot of thought went into everything.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    If the opportunity arises, River + Wolf will be my first suggestion to someone.

Naming for Restaurant Operator

"They went the extra mile, which is what we like about River + Wolf."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.5
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
May - Nov. 2016
Project summary: 

Amidst dealing with language and time zone differences, River + Wolf created a new name for the client to attract global investment and a younger generation.

The Reviewer
 
5,001-10,000 Employees
 
Shanghai, China
Wayne Tseng
Innovation Director, YUM China
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

As a naming agency, River + Wolf is excellent at presenting many options and solutions to fit the business need. They are a disciplined group that expertly manages their project timelines while delivering quality results.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

We are a restaurant operator in China, working with KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell, as well as some other brands. I am the innovation director of the company. I am in charge of restaurant design and product development.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with River + Wolf?

Last year, we decided to spin-off our US entity, establish a Chinese company, and have it listed on the US market so that we could attract investments. In order to do that, we needed a US name which could be translated from the Chinese culture and which would be associated with both markets. This is why we reached out to River + Wolf.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

River + Wolf did some research and held interviews with our leadership and management teams, trying to understand the vision and goals of the company. As a restaurant business, we wanted to attract the younger generation, so River + Wolf proposed some categories based on this. We could choose between having a more phonetic name or a more interesting spelling. River + Wolf came back with several rounds of proposals and asked the management team to use the names in sentences as if they were a part of our daily work. Doing so, we started to understand what kind of name we wanted, and which would be most appropriate for our company in the US and China markets.

How did you come to work with River + Wolf?

We had a challenge and needed someone in the US who could help us and who would be able to work with our Shanghai office. We had a choice of large agencies, but we decided that, rather than a firm, we wanted to find a specific person to work with. The time zone and language differences wouldn’t be a problem for us. We got in touch with River + Wolf and asked their principal what kinds of challenges she thought would be encountered by a non-US client. She broke the process down into different phases like naming, legal registration, prescreening, and approval from the US stock market. She gave us the whole picture, which assured us that River + Wolf’s services would be very good.

How much have you invested with River + Wolf?

I would need to look at our contract, but I can say that River + Wolf charged a fair amount of money.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with River + Wolf in May 2016. The project was completed in November, in line with our goal. We needed to present our intent to the US Exchange Office in November.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

The name that we ended up choosing was one of River + Wolf’s proposals. It’s easily-pronounceable, and it has been well-accepted by our directors and investors. We have 17 regional offices in China, which were all able to adopt the new name overnight. We’ve also moved our headquarters recently, acquiring a new 16-floor building. We’ve placed our new logo on it, so we are very happy with the results, both internally and as they pertain to investors.

How did River + Wolf perform from a project management standpoint?

River + Wolf is a very disciplined group. Margaret Wolfson [Founder & Chief Creative, River + Wolf] managed the whole process and gave us a critical path, with a few major checkpoints. The timeline has been managed well.

The payment needed to be transferred from Shanghai to New York, which took some time. Despite this, River + Wolf did not halt the process.

What did you find most impressive about River + Wolf?

River + Wolf did not only provide a solution but also made us aware of the risks which came along with it, giving us the ability to be prepared. There is no one perfect answer, but there are better and worse ones. River + Wolf gave us a few good options to think about and helped us think ahead of things. They went the extra mile, which is what we like about River + Wolf.

Are there any areas River + Wolf could improve?

River + Wolf is a very small practice in New York. For working with international clients, they need to find appropriate resources for understanding and translating the culture, tones, and manners. The team would need to be more diverse for these situations.

5.0
Overall Score River + Wolf helped us in an area with which we weren’t familiar, and for which we needed a lot of education, as a non-US client. They helped us open our eyes and mind.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    River + Wolf was working within our time zone, not theirs. Whenever we had a meeting, they stayed up late.
  • 4.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    There are firms with more competitive fees, which also have good teams. The cost was acceptable, though.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Naming for Consumer Products Company

"The process was very well-defined, clear, and on time."

Quality: 
4.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
4.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Sept. - Oct. 2016
Project summary: 

River + Wolf tapped into their deep knowledge of the naming industry for a consumer products company that was looking to name a new product.

The Reviewer
 
5001-10,000 Employees
 
New York City, New York
Director of Innovation, Consumer Products Company
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Whereas other firms offer naming services on the side of their main focus areas, River + Wolf dedicates naming as their true area of expertise.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m a director of innovation for a consumer products company.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with River + Wolf?

We needed to name a new product.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

I contacted them with a very simple brief to help me develop a name for a new product we were creating. The deliverable was a list of names that I would take to our lawyers to get trademark and legal approval. It was pretty straightforward.

How did you come to work with River + Wolf?

I found them through a Google search. They were mentioned in some articles I read, so I looked at their website and liked what I saw. I called them and had a brief conversation. I concluded that they would be the right agency to brief.

How much have you invested with River + Wolf?

I think it was about $15,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together in September of 2016, and the project was complete in October of that year. It was a five-week project.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

It’s very subjective, and we did not use one of the names they provided for us. We ended up using a name that we came up with internally.

How did River + Wolf perform from a project management standpoint?

The project management was very strong. The process was very well-defined, clear, and on time. We used email, phone, and Skype to communicate.

What did you find most impressive about River + Wolf?

I think it’s that naming is their expertise. Other providers do a host of other things—naming is usually a small part of bigger projects—whereas, for River + Wolf, it’s their bread and butter.

Are there any areas River + Wolf could improve?

They took off on some creative directions that were a little off-brief.

What tips or recommendations could you share that might increase the likelihood of success with River + Wolf?

Maybe to have some early check-ins before the first presentation, to make sure everything is going in the right direction.

4.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 4.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 4.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Branding and Naming for Investment Company

"All the names they gave us were high-quality. It was difficult to just pick one."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Less than $10,000
 
Sept. - Dec. 2016
Project summary: 

River + Wolf conducted multiple rounds of naming, iterating until the client had found and selected the perfect name for their investment company.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Houston, Texas
Joseph Bramante
Owner, TriArc Properties
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Naming with River + Wolf is an effective and enjoyable experience. They present their materials in a highly professional manner that impresses their clients.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the owner of a multi-family investment company. We invest in apartment complexes.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with River + Wolf?

We were rebranding and renaming the company. I used their services to come up with a new name.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

The process involved an intake form first, and then a follow-up meeting to review the form and get any needed clarification. We had the first round of names within a week or two, then had an hour-long meeting to discuss those names. Then we had a second round of names. From those two rounds, we were able to identify a name. We had the option of stopping with round one, but we opted to continue to round two. The names were of such high quality in round one, and we were curious to see how much better they could get in round two with more specific feedback.

We only had them work on the name, but they referred us to one of their contacts for a logo. They also put us in touch with the trademark company they use, which was great. We ended up using them to file for our trademark.

How did you come to work with River + Wolf?

We found them on the Internet. They were one of the top-rated companies, and the price point was affordable for a small business like ours.

How much have you invested with River + Wolf?

We spent about $8,000 on their services.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together in September of 2016, and the project was completed in November or December of that year.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

Everyone loves our name. We’ve only been using the new name for about three months, but there’s already a noticeable difference in how people perceive us.

How did River + Wolf perform from a project management standpoint?

They perform exceptionally well. I was the key point of contact, but we had two other owners providing feedback. They managed us very well. It was a rather seamless process from the intake, through review, and then to completion. We had no issues.

What did you find most impressive about River + Wolf?

They had a good understanding of what we were trying to achieve.

Are there any areas River + Wolf could improve?

I’d like it better if the intake form was a fillable form online, rather than having to fill out a Word document.

5.0
Overall Score From a personal standpoint, it was great to interact with them. From a professional standpoint, the presentation materials were top-notch, and the way we received the names was very presentable. It was a great experience.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They met the deadlines. If they were late, it was only a day. We never had to reschedule for the next week. It was pretty spot-on.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Other firms are double and triple what they charge. I think they fit in the perfect niche of being a small firm that produces big results.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    All the names they gave us were high-quality. It was difficult to just pick one.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Brand Storytelling for Performing Arts Center

"I appreciated their attitude—they wanted to know what they could do to help us succeed."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Mar. 2016 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

The client used River + Wolf to design and create program guides that accurately convey the story of their brand to local, regional, and national communities.

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
Hartford, Connecticut
Yolande Spears
SVP of Education, The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The dedication of the team at River + Wolf is what makes their work so effective. They challenge their clients to do and be better.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts is Connecticut’s largest performing arts center. We have been in business almost 90 years. We are a producer and we also present programming and venue management. We are an award winning arts in education program. We received awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the US Department of Education, and the GE Foundation.

I’m the senior vice president of education and community initiatives. I work with various organizations in the community and schools to do community programming. We collaborate and partner with public, private, and charter schools to create professional development for teachers as well as design and implement arts in education/enriched curriculum.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with River + Wolf?

We found that even though we were doing a lot of work in schools, we weren’t able to tell our story or enrich our brand. We knew we had an opportunity to tell our story but we didn’t know how to tell it.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We worked with River + Wolf initially to work on brand storytelling. They also helped us with copywriting some of our partner programs. One of the most significant reasons we continued working with them was because we had received a grant for $1 million to help us go to the next level. River + Wolf helped us to know how we could do that by developing the program model and the program guide. They’ve worked on a total of 7 or 8 projects for us.

How much have you invested with River + Wolf?

The average project with River + Wolf costs between $25,000 and $30,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

The most recent time we hired them was 9 months ago. As we plan for the future, we know we’ll continue to work with them because of the great experience we’ve had and the quality of work they offer.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

What River + Wolf did was powerful because it was truly a brand extension for us. We were able to use the product to introduce our art education program to our industry and others on a local, regional, and national scope. When I would speak at the Broadway League, I would take the product created by River + Wolf. I would use that in my presentation to give people an idea of how they might be able to do the same thing in their performing arts centers. Recently, we had an opportunity to work with a new partner in China, so River + Wolf is helping us tell our story internationally as well.

One of the reasons we were able to receive the $1 million grant from the foundation was because the foundation was aware of the earlier work that River + Wolf had done for us. The foundation was so impressed with what we had done with the first level of our model that they wanted us to replicate the same model for other communities. For 1 community, our program helped reduce some of their remedial reading by half because they were using the strategy and product that River + Wolf created.

How did River + Wolf perform from a project management standpoint?

They were excellent. They were very timely and kept our team on schedule.

What did you find most impressive about River + Wolf?

They helped us have a better understanding of how our brand is changing and what we can do with it. The brand storytelling was really important for us because oftentimes at a performing arts center, people believe that the work you do is what happens onstage. River + Wolf was able to show that the work we do is in the community—local, regional and national—which would not have been seen otherwise. I appreciated their attitude—they wanted to know what they could do to help us succeed. Their team was dedicated and thoughtful.

Are there any areas River + Wolf could improve?

No. As they led us through this process, we learned more and understood more. We were very happy with their work.

5.0
Overall Score We were extremely happy with the quality of the work and the rates they charged. I have no complaints about it.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They were really good at scheduling and keeping us on track no matter what time it was.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Their price was quite reasonable for us as a non-profit, especially for the quality of the product we received in return.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    They were able to deliver a product that we were not expecting. They challenged us to get better at what we were doing.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Naming for Education Company

"I'd recommend River + Wolf to anyone looking to find a business name."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Less than $10,000
 
Oct. - Nov. 2016
Project summary: 

The director of an organization in the education sector looked to River + Wolf to come up with a name that would leverage their position in the market.

The Reviewer
 
2-10 Employees
 
United Kingdom
Managing Director, Educational Company
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Naming is a challenging field, and yet River + Wolf excels at providing many options and being clear about next steps throughout the process.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

We are an early-stage organization working in the education segment. I am the managing director of the company.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with River + Wolf?

We worked with River + Wolf on finding a business name that would be competitive in the market.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

River + Wolf gave us a questionnaire about our goals. It was followed by a phone call meant to clarify our answers. River + Wolf explored a few names, giving us a list of 20 options.

How did you come to work with River + Wolf?

We found River + Wolf through a Google search. I omitted any companies which didn't specify pricing. Between the ones who did, the prices varied wildly, which made the selection difficult. Based on the look and feel of their website, River + Wolf seemed to be an engaging company. The terminology used and the actual content were good.

How much have you invested with River + Wolf?

The cost of River + Wolf was below $10,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with River + Wolf in October 2016. The work took 4-5 weeks to complete.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

We have trademarked and are currently using the business name developed by River + Wolf.

How did River + Wolf perform from a project management standpoint?

River + Wolf was clear about its activity and what was needed from us. Everything seemed to run on time, and we understood where we were within the process.

What did you find most impressive about River + Wolf?

Finding a name for a business is a very difficult task, like naming a baby. I don't know how other companies do this, but there are few providers in the UK for this type of work because people usually come up with their own names. As such, I have no comparisons for River + Wolf, but we found their service useful. I have no negative comments.

Are there any areas River + Wolf could improve?

No, it was a hard task to undertake, but River + Wolf made it clear what steps we should go through, gave us many options, and narrowed down the possible names.

5.0
Overall Score I found it to be a satisfying experience. Certain services of this type are not well defined, so pricing can be hard to determine. I felt it was worth it.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    Timelines were respected, with River + Wolf even setting reminders for us.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    We've got quite a bit of value for money, even in terms of insight into the business itself.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    River + Wolf was clear about what we were getting and when. They stuck to our timeline and budget.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I'd recommend River + Wolf to anyone looking to find a business name.

Naming for Women's Nutrition Manufacturer

"Margaret is a MASTER wordsmith! Her passion and enthusiasm are impressive."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Less than $10,000
Project summary: 

River + Wolf worked to come up with the perfect name for the client's current brand to resonate with consumers and unify all future product lines.

The Reviewer
 
2-10 Employees
 
Los Angeles, California
Staness Jonekos
Founder, Nessta Life, Inc.
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

While working with both startups and larger companies, River + Wolf puts an equal amount of effort and care into the naming process.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

Nessta Life, Inc. manufactures customized nutrition for women inspired by the latest gender-based research. I am the founder and chief executive officer.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with River + Wolf?

Our product line is named Eat Like a Woman®, but we are growing to include other product lines for men and children. We needed an overall company name as an umbrella for all the future brands.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We needed a new company name that we could trademark, appeal to both sexes, embrace our current brand, and make us credible within the science community.

How did you come to work with River + Wolf?

I discovered River + Wolf during a Google search on a quest to find a “boutique” naming agency. I prefer a personalized creative working relationship and their website presented itself as such. I also demanded a firm that was passionate about the brand story and had major past successes.

How much have you invested with River + Wolf?

In the $10,000 range.

What is the status of this engagement?

We had a fast turnaround because our product packaging was being designed to launch our company within 6 weeks.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

Margaret Wolfson [Founder of River + Wolf] not only helped with brand focus and naming architecture, but she also delivered almost 100 potential names quickly in an impressive power point. She knew the importance of feeling connected to the new name and presented options in these categories: natural language, coined names, compounds, and short phrases.

How did River + Wolf perform from a project management standpoint?

This was our first time working with a naming company. Margaret was a master at guiding the process, so we stayed on schedule and I knew what to expect.

What did you find most impressive about River + Wolf?

Margaret is a MASTER wordsmith! Her passion and enthusiasm are impressive. My company is a start-up, yet I felt like one of the big brands she deals with daily. She fully understood the food & beverage world and could apply her experience to guide my journey.

Are there any areas River + Wolf could improve?

I highly recommend River + Wolf to any company searching for a new name. The experience was outstanding, and lots of fun! Margaret is truly gifted.

5.0
Overall Score 5+!
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer