Realm Magazine: the Journal for Queen City CEOs

In October of 2019, Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce approached BS LLC to name their 2020 publication targeted at the city’s leading businesses.

Realm Magazine Cover
Realm Magazine, inside, BS LLC Feature

Verbatim, Published in Realm Magazine Fall 2020

Building a Dream

Creating a new brand identity is all about relationships.

The wordplay of BS LLC is hard to miss. True, founders Ben Greenberg and Sebastien Hue have first names that share those initials, but the value in a punchy name —and the lasting recall power—is something their business thrives on. The name’s official definition is “brand strategy,” according to Greenberg.

“Whenever we think about naming, we’re always thinking about three things,” he says. “First, how it sounds rolling off the tongue. We’re thinking about how it looks, how the letters look stacked up next to each other. An the third, of course, is, What’s it mean? Does it connect with the ideas we’re trying to communicate, the goals of the project, the voice of the owners or founders, and the needs of the audience? We’re always trying to balance out those goals.”

The pair’s process—which they used to help Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber create a name and brand identity for this very publication—starts with an ideation session with client stakeholders, where they ask big-picture questions. From there, they undertake in-depth research, getting more granular as they go along. “We always try to understand we call the ‘causal relationship,’ why people make decisions,” says Hue.

From there, the pair starts creating experiences around those findings and building brands around those experiences. For Realm, they built themes around the publication—audience, voice, city connection—before further ideating words and association that could open doors to the right name. They presented 10 concepts to the Chamber and Cincinnati Magazine, and Realm emerged.

There are two big things with Realm that we liked,” says Greenberg. “Realm is a kingdom, which references the Queen City really nicely, which we knew the Chamber and its constituents would be leaning into. The other meaning, which is more an idiom, is that realm is an area of expertise or interest.”