Parents are feeling intense pressure to pick names that set their kids apart. Some are even hiring consultants. Alexandra Alter on the art of ‘branding’ your newborn.
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Some parents are checking Social Security data to make sure their choices aren’t too trendy, while others are fussing over every consonant like corporate branding experts. They’re also pulling ideas from books, Web sites and software programs, and in some cases, hiring professional baby-name consultants who use mathematical formulas.
Denise McCombie, 37, a California mother of two who’s expecting a daughter this fall, spent $475 to have a numerologist test her favorite name, Leah Marie, to see if it had positive associations. (It did.) This March, one nervous mom-to-be from Illinois listed her 16 favorite names on a tournament bracket and asked friends, family and people she met at baby showers to fill it out. The winner: Anna Irene