Funny Acronym Ideas (FAI)by Michael Essek · Updated: March 28, 2023
One of my most-frequented websites when working on new ideas is OneLook.com
It’s basically a big ol’ dictionary that displays related words, phrases containing certain words, and a whole lot more.
One of the things it can do is ‘expand’ words – so you can put in a word – and get back phrases that spell out that word…
For example, if you enter ‘expand:NASA‘ – you’ll get back phrases like:
- “National Aeronautics And Space Administration”
- “Newton Abbot Spurs AFC”
- “Not Afraid To Stand Alone”
Now you might be thinking – “that’s great Michael, but what am I supposed to do with this?”
Well, besides it being pretty fun to play with, it can be especially useful if you have a short word or slang term that you’d like to brainstorm around.
For example, here’s what I got for:
- LMAO – Let’s Make An Opera
- LOL – Leg Of Lamb
- BEER – Back-Emission Electron Radiography
- BRB – Baton Rouge Bridge
There are several ways for morphing these acronyms into finished designs – from a relatively simple approach…
…to something more complex – like a ‘Is Your Child Texting About X?’ design (which is a great meme format for social media):
Sidenote: You could create a steady flow of funny ideas simply by taking new or trending words from somewhere like Urban Dictionary and dropping them into OneLook’s expand tool.
Acronyms in general are fertile ground for funny ideas – especially those that are well recognised, like WTF – or even just short simple words like MATH:
Simple Trick: Acronyms like BYOB and WTF are super easy to adapt to almost any subject or niche; all you need is a word that starts with a B or F.
Eg. – For Fishing – WTF: Where’s The Fish? | BYOB – Bring Your Own Bait
For Graphic Designers – WTF: What’s The Font? | BYOB – Bring Your Own Baseline Grid
Finally there’s a few other approaches besides the one I’ve just shared with you that you should know about.
For example – you could use the approach of expanding each letter into short sentences…
…or you could go just forget the letters completely and create a ‘wrong acronym’ design:
Bottom line: Acronyms are fun and can lead to some decent ideas (especially silly ones).
So if silly ideas are your thing, you’ll have plenty to go at if you incorporate these acronym approaches into your designs.
I hope you found this article useful.
This is a sample chapter from my new book ‘The Future Is Funny’ – a collection of my best articles on using humour to help you sell more products.