If you are in the process of creating a start-up, there are many central things that will need to be contemplated. Things such as the product or service you’ll be selling or providing, your target market, and your specific business structure that you plan on using (sole proprietorship, LLC, etc.). All of these different options will be very important. But one key aspect of starting a new business that people often overlook is their brand name.
It might seem like your name is a moderately small detail in terms of your start-up, it may actually be what ends up making or breaking the success of your business. Furthermore, your name is one of the first things that customers will hear about your business and is a great way for your business can create a clear competitive advantage.
Luckily, the ideal name for your start-up is something that is likely well within your reach. In this article, we will outline the most significant things for you to think about when coming up with business names. Additionally, we will discuss some of the best time-tested approaches you should consider using when choosing a name.
Be Sure to Choose a Name that’s Original
There is no doubt that in order to survive in the cut-throat world of business, you will need to prove your relevance and stand out from the competition. If you are an entrepreneur who is thinking about entering an already crowded industry then you will need to select a name that will make a lasting impression on your audience. As you start the process of looking for unique, original names, you should also define your mission, your company values, and the exact image you are hoping to inspire with your name.
Oftentimes, your name will be one of the first things that potential clients and investors will find out about your company. You need to assume that there are already a dozen companies offering a similar product or service at a similar price. This means that instead of conforming to the norm and choosing a name that may have been popular twenty years ago, you should redefine the standard and come up with a name that’s unique and interesting. Through taking chances you can become a great entrepreneur, don’t worry that at times it may feel uncomfortable.
… but Also Make Sure the Name is Easy to Remember
Many successful companies that wanted to create an original name often ended up creating new words altogether. Tech giant companies such as Facebook, Samsung, Twitter, and others have all selected names that—before their initial establishment—would not be found in any English-speaking dictionary. Nevertheless, while all of these great brand names are special and unique, they are also relatively simple to say and easy to remember.
Here are some of the most important things you should keep in mind when trying to make a list of memorable names:
- Try to limit the amount of words and syllables that your name has
- Even if you are using a made up word, choose a word that is easy to spell and pronounce
- Try this easy test: give someone you know a list of ten words (one of which is the name you are considering) and then ten minutes later see which of those words they are able to remember
Though the “test” mentioned in this list is obviously non-binding, it can be an extremely valuable checkmark throughout the naming process. Usually, it makes sense to come up with a list of many potential names and then see which ones are actually able to stick in people’s minds.
Test the Name with Potential Future Clients
No matter what your start-up may be attempting to sell, the universal truth is that some people are simply much more likely to identify with your brand than others. Once you have defined your target market based on age, gender, lifestyles, etc. then you will be in a position to create a focus group that can potentially test your name ideas out with.
When running a focus group with your target audience, there are a few key things you should keep in mind. Not only should you make sure that your name is one that potential customers will actually like, but you should also make sure that the name is one that is able to effectively connect your business with your preferred brand-image.
The naming process is one that is absolutely critical and should not be readily ignored. There are many distinctive things that will need to be deliberated when coming up with a new name for your brand. The things to consider include your company values, uniqueness, and whether or not your name is available. By taking the time to find the ideal name for your start-up, you will be in a much better position to succeed and stand out from the competition.
Grant Polachek is the Director of Marketing at Inc 500 company Squadhelp.com, the worlds #1 naming platform, with nearly 20,000 customers from the smallest startups across the globe to the largest corporations including Nestle, Philips, Hilton, Pepsi, and AutoNation. Get inspired by exploring these winning brand name ideas.