Hi! My name is (what?) (2) : Fintech & Insurtech branding use cases
Brand naming analysis of 100+ startups, over 20y in Europe
At BlackFin, as we are screening the European startup market in depth, we noticed clear naming trends, especially when deep diving into Insurtech and Fintech startups (our focus).
Sadly, most of Fintech and Insurtech entrepreneurs still consider that having a creative brand is not a priority. They assume creativity is not their thing… that’s a shame, since branding is a key differentiator element for early-stage startups. Here are 10 European trends though, over 100+ Fintechs and Insurtechs over 20 years.
B2B Fintech: a singular kind of creativity
First of all, since the 1990s, following Fortuneo and Moneo Resto, many Fintech startups have used the -eo ; -ea ; -ia endings. It is a very interesting trend as long as it is a strong one in Europe for new born children too (Léo, Léa, Etc. in France for example). This humanization of the brand names would be confirmed in the 2010s with the Human names trend ( see below). Avanseo, Akeneo, Pleo, Tonteo, Nortia, Estimeo or Cautioneo followed this trend.
Many B2B Fintech startups just set their name with “fin”, “pay”, “lend” or even «bank» or “cap” to be identified as pure player of the financial world: Finkey, Finpoint, Finalgo (accelerated by the B612), Finve (accelerated by Numa), Fintecture, Fintank, Finvex, Fintonic, Finextra, or PayLead, PayGreen, Paymium, PayPerks, IziPay (accelerated by LE B612), Paytweak, Paypull, SharePay (part of Linxo), and Lendix, Lendup, Lendify, Lenddo etc. or again Bankin, eBankit, MargoBank, and Capito, Izicap.
Embodying a will to be disruptive (Argh!—can’t stand this word), plenty of Fintech startups chose groundbreaking names which belong to the vocabulary of paradigm shifts. Neobanks are good examples of this trend: Revolut, Betterment, AtomBank or Tide for example. This revolution wave is an interesting trend for Insurtechs too, and some of them are already surfing on it like Shift Technologies, DreamQuark, or Guevara .
Other Fintech startups go further, valuing iconoclastic names. Their brand names are a kind of negation of the idea of branding to some extent, shuffling (random?) letters, with for example strange vowels or consonants put together like Unnax, Ubble.ai , bunq or Qonto. Some of them can even embed numbers like N26, pretending it was the day or the address of the holy founding momentum.
B2B Insurtech branding chooices
Many Insurtech startups chose a brand name with a double “o” like : Buckaroo (BlackFin-backed), Proprioo, Segguroo (a Spanish insurtech), Dacadoo (Netherlands), TheFloow (UK-based insurtech), Valoo, etc. It appears that this double “o” would come from the « object oriented » concept, inspired by Yahoo, Wanadoo and of course by Google.
The 3 main branding trends for both Fintech and Insurtech: Vegetables fashion+Sharing activism + Human names
- I don’t know why in the 2000s, appeared many vegetable names for Insurtech and Fintech startups. Maybe it embodies something “good for your health” and fun in some ways, especially useful for B2C positioning like Pumpkin , Mangopay , Leetchi , Lemonade , Kabbage, Goji (Anthemis-backed), Advocado (regtech), etc. And within the insurtech space Marmalada (NOR Capital-backed), Brokoli (Spanish insurtech). According to Techcrunch, having an animal name is a thing too, easy for the logo but are you serious, MortgageHippo and Hippo Insurance (Are hippomotamus the new black?)?
- Then, the Sharing Economy trend has been very powerful in terms of names’ influence, using the “We” everywhere, challenging the You of Youtube or the My of Myspace. Sometimes this “We” has been turned into the French “Oui”. And the Insurtech / Regtech brand names haven’t made exception to these frames: Wemind, Weesee, Wefox, WeCover, WeSharebonds …
- Finally, a very strong fashion trend is about humanization of the branding names with the use of real human names like James, Leocare, Marcus (GoldmanSachs), Ada, George.tech (Kerala-backed), Alan (CNP & Index Ventures-backed), Lydia ( XAnge & CNP-backed), MargoBank (Daphni -backed), etc. Many insurers and banks set also human names as product names like Cerise by Groupama Insurance. Betting on human names fosters the human-friendly & more reality-linked sides of tech projects. As a matter of fact, this fashion is a more common practice for Fintech or Insurtech startups which have a front end dedicated to Customers or SMBs.
If you are not into these fashion trends, either you are out of fashion (sorry), either you may be launching the next generation of startup brand names (double check: are you really sure you are not in the 1st category? ) . Well, don’t panic, if you have chosen a totally “fashion-faux-pas” brand name for your Fintech or Insurtech startup, you could always switch it and get a second chance (see my next article — part 3 )
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