We are working on a site which will basically be an event directory/ aggregator for tech and business events, conferences, workshops, etc.
Focused on tech events.
We don't have the money to hire a company, and we're not getting anywhere ourselves. Any ideas?
For a web business, particularly where the site is the business, naming is unavoidably about what domain names are available. Generating a list of words related to your business, combining them with each other, positive adjectives, and common prefixes/suffixes can yield some good results.
LeanDomainSearch.com is my go-to tool these days. You type a word, it shows you a large list of available .coms that include that word in it. They also now have a list of "brandable" domains, made-up words that just sound kinda cool (e.g. Everta, Arcanely, BullFlower, Varsitus).
Domize.com is also a great tool for this. You can check the availability of multiple domains at once, using an external wordlist if you want, auto-combining sets of words, checking for rhyming words, or even using regex.
InstantDomainSearch.com is my tool of choice for quickly typing in random guesses at a domain and seeing if they're available.
If it's really coming up with names at all that's your trouble, try http://pickydomains.com/. You deposit $50, a bunch of people brainstorm ideas for you, if you like one, you pay, if you don't, you get your money back.
Naming companies is really hard work... I think it's unavoidable to be frustrated with it at times, you just have to keep at it...
The Igor naming guide is a classic, IMHO a must-read.
I think that compound names which signal what the company does (fx YouTube, LinkedIn) are good, and probably the easiest to build a brand around early on. One way of building these is to sit down with a good thesaurus, and look hard at what the core offering of the company is.
I once suffered through an all-day "brainstorming" event with the whole company (10 people I think). It was horrible. I don't think large groups are good for this kind of work; once the first person get tired and despairs the rest quickly follow. Maybe you could benefit from short sessions with spouses, friends and any marketing professionals, where you ask for additional inspiration and perspectives on what value your service brings to its customers. After that, I think the founders should decide on the final name.