Where On Earth Did “Kasasa” Come From?

Kasasa Name IllustrationWhen we decided to create a new banking brand for our awesome checking and savings accounts that are only available through community banks and credit unions, we took a lot of care choosing the perfect name. Kasasa is a new way to bank that gives back to account holders in valuable ways, so “Amazing Checking” just wasn’t going to cut it. We needed a name that would break through the clutter and give people a reason to take notice.

Despite what you may think, the word “Kasasa” wasn’t the sound we heard when someone sneezed—it was actually something we thought about for a long time and consciously chose. And, yes, it’s true that a lot of people think it’s kind of silly when they first hear it, but then they start to have a lot of fun with it. You have to admit that it’s fun to say!

What Kasasa stands for

Besides being a catchy word, Kasasa is a philosophy. It’s a belief that you should get something back for entrusting a bank or credit union with your money. It’s a belief that you should be inspired by accounts that benefit you the most, and services that give you complete control over your financial life. We strongly believe that banking shouldn’t just be a necessity; it should help you make the most of your hard-earned money, and that’s what Kasasa is here to do.

What we kept in mind during the brainstorming process

It had to:

  • be unique and original so we can infuse our own meaning into it
  • work as both a noun and a verb (like how many people use the word Google)
  • be completely different than any other banking-related word or name
  • be catchy; something that would be fun to say
  • be valiant, moxie, and savvy like the brand it would stand for

Contenders that didn’t live up to the brand essence

During our naming brainstorms we came up with a LOT of names. Here are just a handful of the top contenders that ultimately did not live up to the essence of our brand as well as “Kasasa.” Note that some of these names may now actually be brands and companies, and some may have been during our brainstorm since we didn’t rule anything out initially so that we could get a lot of ideas.

  • Imagis – similar to “imagine”
  • Cerus – derived from the goddess of growth and cultivation—she lived in a world where money grows on trees
  • Ooba – very unique and similar to “uber”
  • Zelus – Greek god of transformation and similar to “zeal”
  • Epik – play on “epic”
  • Moja – definitely unique and begins the same as “money”

Kasasa was the grand champ

Kasasa won for many reasons: it is very unique, can take on our own meaning, it has good rhythm, could easily be a verb or noun, and is a lot of fun to say.

Do you Kasasa?™

The tagline, “Do you Kasasa?” was actually the campaign for our first series of advertisements that brought to life the big idea, “the way banking should be.” It has stuck around because of its catchiness; it’s fun to say and account holders love replying back, “Yes I do!” or “I Kasasa!” We were thrilled that it was able to last and we’ve found that it works well in a lot of places: from our website, to event flyers, to social media. We also constantly see tweets with “Do you Kasasa?” in them, which make us smile. What a great way to spread the word about the checking and savings accounts that were created for you! So, do you Kasasa?

Tweet Collage 

Peggy Keefe-Lopez
About the Author

Peggy Keefe-Lopez is a closet hippie. A fan of making DIY beauty care and household cleaning products, she’s always fully stocked on honey, vinegar, and baking soda, but saves lots of money! And as Kasasa’s social media czar, she spends enough work hours on Facebook and Twitter to get reprimanded at a normal job.

3 Questions for Peggy:

  1. Do you look good in a baseball cap?

    You’ll never know. I hate wearing things on my head – caps, wigs, Sorting Hats. (I’d totally be Ravenclaw btw.)

  2. What’s your guilty pleasure?

    Reality TV generally annoys me but whenever I catch Millionaire Matchmaker on I must watch it. People with tons of money can fail at things too? That’s very affirming.

  3. What’s the best deal you’ve ever gotten?

    Getting married and locking down free tax preparation for life! I love my frugal, finance-obsessed husband.

2 thoughts on “Where On Earth Did “Kasasa” Come From?

  1. Hey M.,
    That’s a good question and one I can’t exactly answer. The word (for us and our meaning) originated in our brainstorms when trying to create the brand. But as you can see in this post (http://blog.kasasa.com/2009/06/no-were-not-that-kasasa.html) the word Kasasa is used for a few other things. So I’m sure there’s a technical etymology for those. But as far as the Kasasa that stands for a new way to bank, it was created in 2009 by us!
    -Peggy

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