What will my business name represent?
Your business name will help to segment you from your competitors and reinforce what your company image is. Think about your brand positioning and what your line of business is and then work towards choosing a business name. For instance, Apple choose their name to stand out from names like IBM and NEC. Look for a name that supports your brand, what is your brands focus and strategy, how do you want to be perceived and what will you tone of voice be… warm, approachable, different, human, and a little quirky maybe?
I do not want to limit my company name
Do not choose a name that restricts your business profiling in the future, stopping expansion of product lines or expanding to new locations. It could be a good name to start a business but does it have longevity and will it travel. In years to come you could end up with costly rebranding exercises if you restrict your company name.
Does my company name make sense for my business?
A company name needs to show what you are about and what your products and services are. For example Lawn & Order, is a good name for a landscaping business because it gets people’s attention and clearly relates to the company’s services.
Is the company name easy to remember?
The shorter the name the better and avoid the use of hyphens and other ‘special’ characters. Acronyms can also cause a problem for people too as not everyone will understand. A great point to remember, dependent on the first letter of your business will be where your business is printed in business directories, do you want to be at the beginning with the letter A or be at the end with the letter Z.
Brand identity for a company or product think simple and straightforward – its back in style and costs less to put together.
Can people spell our business name?
Why would you want a brand name that people would not be able to spell? Think about your first name and surname, how many times do you have to spell it to people? Your company name will be your website address, social media address and many more so the easier to spell the better and the shorter the better. Why would you want a brand name that creates upset in trying to spell it correctly which will result in lost traffic to website and social media resulting in less customers?
How will potential customers first see your business name?
Marketing experts believe that there are exceptions to the ‘easy to spell’ rule especially if customers are most likely to see your business name first in print or online. For example the business name Zulily.co.uk, an online company offering daily deals for mum, babies and children. From hearing that name, you may not know instantly what the company was or did, but with the company’s marketing campaigns has meant more consumers are beginning to recognise the company name. The good result here is that the unusual sound and spelling of the company name has helped them create a distinctive brand identity.
Does the business name sound catchy, is it easy to pronounce?
The sound of a business name is important, be sure that all your customers will be able to say the company name easily. “It is a hard fact that people are able to spell, pronounce and remember names that they are familiar with,” for instance Apple, Virgin, Orange, which are all strong brand names. Business names that do not mean anything can be an expensive exercise in marketing.
Is your name meaningful only to yourself?
A business name with personal meaning will mean nothing to your brand and you will not be there to explain it when people come across your business. A business name needs to mean something and words spelt backwards or in another language will not work.
Is the name visually appealing?
How will your logo look? What will it look like on an advertisement, or even a billboard? Think about the line and balance of the lettering, is there to bold lettering for some of the words or all the same, will the logo move into the wording. For instance, Volvo has a great brand albeit plain lettering and consistent there are no low hanging letters. Look at familiar large brands for idea’s and get your designer to mock at least half a dozen for consideration. Once the designs are put together try to pull together a number of people to get feedback on the designs – do they see a brand or do they see just a name? It’s always great to receive feedback that isn’t close to the company name as you will be.