Our new name is Morning Recovery

We changed our name to Morning Recovery. Here's why.

A few months ago, I decided to solve a problem that I’ve wanted to tackle since I was 19: the dreadful morning after drinking. The symptoms from a night of heavy drinking are not only physically painful but they also make me extremely unproductive, and what I hate more than anything is wasting time. Thus, after many months of R&D and consumer testing, The Hangover Drink was born. The Hangover Drink is a one-stop hangover cure. Drink it during or after consuming alcohol, and wake up feeling rejuvenated and ready to tackle your day.

I named the product myself and was proud of it. “The Hangover Drink" was functional, straightforward, and had high potential for SEO traffic. The name of the product was a large reason why we gained quick traction when I created a public webpage. Without any real push, The Hangover Drink made it onto the front page of Product Hunt, was featured on TV in Belgium, and picked up by many North American publications. But, we all know that start-ups are never this easy.

Now, let me start by admitting that I dove into my startup with very little industry knowledge in beverages/supplements. I’ve been in tech my whole life, and live in the bubble we all know as Silicon Valley. I just needed to PM The Hangover Drink, right?

Nope, because there’s something called the FDA. The FDA is the Food and Drug Administration, and is a federal agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services. They mean serious business, and have strict rules around everything from ingredients to language that is allowed on consumable products.

As I was finalizing my nutritional labels with the FDA, I was told that my brand name may not be accepted.  

Name Screwup #1: We couldn't use “hangover” in our brand name. Hangover is classified as a health disease by the FDA.

Name Screwup #2: We couldn't use the word “drink” in our brand name because our beverage is a dietary supplement with functional benefits.

I tried to figure out if there was a way to get around FDA regulations like any respecting hustler would do. Some of our competitors clearly violated these rules with the mention of both "hangover" and "drink" in their labels. Unfortunately, the risk here was too high for our team to gamble on. We didn't want any delays in our launch and shipment.

The Painful Name Journey

With only 6 days left until our launch video shoot, we needed to think of a new name for our product. The painful naming journey began:

1. Brain Dump

The first thing we did was a brain dump. We took two days to come up with as many brand names as we could. We stress tested our favorites against multiple decision criteria, and eventually got down to about 10.

2. Consumer Research

The Hangover Drink had created a following in the past 2 months. We created a beta test group to get real feedback from these followers. This community has been vital to our product iterations. Naturally, we chose to turn to this community to conduct a poll.

3. The T.J Miller way

T.J Miller didn’t succeed in finding an alternative name for Pied Piper, but I thought that I should give his method a try considering that there was only 2 days to go before our video shoot. Unfortunately, nothing good came out of that... Instead, I was left feeling unhappy with our name alternatives. I couldn't pinpoint exactly why. After hours of deliberation, I decided to open a bottle of wine with my team, and we called it a night. 

Clutch time

I woke up next morning feeling tired and groggy. With no samples of The Hangover Drink left, I was filled with immediate regret and an overwhelming sense of self disappointment consumed me.

Rough mornings are brutal. My plans of getting up and getting things done were gone. That’s when it clicked. The reason why we started The Hangover Drink project was to help everyone have a great night out without having to pay the consequences the morning after. 

Our goal is to help you recover your mornings, and get back your time.

Launching July 5.  

Morning Recovery will be launching with an Indiegogo campaign on July 5th 2017. We’re excited to bring our product to life and showcase our months of hard work. Thanks for reading this and please share to support our upcoming campaign!

sisun lee