Pamela Redmond, CEO

Montclair, NJ
Trending on Nameberry Top 1000 baby names page
A big name in names

“What’s in a name?” That’s the question that Pamela Redmond’s been asking herself for decades — a lifelong passion that formed the backbone of ten bestselling books on names she wrote with her writing partner Linda Rosenkrantz. Her content aims to help parents make well-informed decisions about their children’s names, while having some fun doing it.

“We had been pushed to make a site for a while, but we always said we were name experts — not web developers. So for a while we resisted,” says Pamela. But she and Linda decided to go for it, hiring a designer and engineer who could translate the information of their books into a dynamic digital presence.

As you can imagine, Pamela and Linda put a lot of thought into naming their site. Nameroni, namefish, namerhood, nomdebaby… those were just a few of the options that were floated. But finally, after consulting with some discerning friends, Nameberry was born.

“We were about to launch when a friend who'd worked in digital media asked me what we were going to do about SEO, and I said, ‘What's that?’” says Linda, who hadn’t even considered strategies for driving traffic to the site.

But after Pamela’s post about avoiding hipster baby names went viral, traffic was suddenly coming to Nameberry — so she and her team needed to figure out a way to harness this activity and turn their young site into a thriving business.

Nameberry home page.
Ads take off

“Names are a central aspect of our identity and they're with us forever,” says Pamela. “That makes naming a huge responsibility and one where everyone deserves free and equal access to reliable information.”

She knew she didn’t want to commodify something as sacred as the naming process. After all, it wouldn’t be fair for people with more money to have enhanced access to information about names. That meant no paywalls or subscription services.

Instead, Pamela and her team decided to use an ad-supported model so that everyone could access the information needed to make this vital decision — without having to spend any money.

They turned to Google AdSense, which would give them the simple tools needed to get up and running with their ad strategy.

“We are very grateful for the accessibility of Google’s ad tech tools,” says Pamela. “The platform has allowed us to start monetizing Nameberry from the earliest days, enabling us to stay free and independent, while offering our unique expertise to the world.”

They then partnered with Hashtag Labs, a Google Certified Publishing Partner, to help manage their ad strategy going forward.

“With Hashtag Labs, we feel like we have a true partner and collaborator,” says Pamela. “The team there is extremely accessible and really gives very personalized help. If I email them with a question or a request, they get right back to us.”

Today, virtually all of Nameberry’s revenue comes from ads. And with that revenue, they’ve been able to expand their team. Today they have a full-time editor-in-chief, a part-time assistant editor, and a group of part-time junior editors and writers.

This combination of a growing team and sustainable ad revenue has kept Nameberry up and running since 2008 — and has allowed them to embark on some exciting name-related projects.

The game of the name

With the content of the site humming along, it was time to think bigger. One day, Pamela met with the site’s CTO and Co-Creator, Hugh Hunter who had an idea for a feature: Baby Name DNA.

“I didn’t really even know what the feature was yet, but I loved the name Baby Name DNA, so I knew I wanted to do something with it,” recalls Pamella.

Hugh explained that it’d be a data-driven tool that analyzes your deep preferences for name qualities, such as popularity and unconventionality, then matches you with names that have the same “DNA.” The more you play around with the tool, the smarter it gets — and the more accurate its personalized lists of name ideas get.

This sort of ambitious idea never would have been possible before ad revenue. But now Pamela and her team had the resources to hire external designers and coders who could bring Baby Name DNA to life.

Additionally, Baby Name DNA took so much of Pamela’s time and energy that she needed to expand the editorial staff to oversee things in her stead — which, again, was possible thanks to ad revenue from Google ads.

“We are very grateful for the accessibility of Google’s ad tech tools. The platform has allowed us to start monetizing Nameberry from the earliest days, enabling us to stay free and independent, while offering our unique expertise to the world.”
A lifelong pursuit

Pamela appreciates that Google helps her own the site 100%. Because they’re sustainable purely through ad revenue, they haven’t had to take outside investment and become reliant on some larger publishing organization. This helps her maintain the integrity of the site and stay independent.

“We're not ruled by SEO, we're not ruled by some owner that's looking for a certain kind of profit,” says Pamela. “We just want to produce great content and do it in a way that really shows off what's special about us, which is that we truly are experts and we're not approaching this cynically.”

“I love names and I always have,” says Pamela. “My interest never wanes, even through 35 years of professionally writing about them. Running Nameberry makes me feel like I'm following a passion I’ve had since I was a child — and knowing that I've changed the world of names in a major and positive way.”

About the Publisher

Pamela Redmond is the co-creator and CEO of Nameberry, the world’s largest website devoted to baby names. The author of more than 20 books of nonfiction and fiction, Redmond is the author of the novels Younger, the basis of the seven-season TV show, and The Matriarch, due out from Zibby Books in August 2024.
Pamela Redmond headshot.