Believe it or not, the name of your business, in large part, lays the foundation for the future success or failure of the brand. Your business’s name is what developers your target audience’s first impression of your company, and as they say, you only get one chance to make a good and lasting impression.
As such, it is imperative to choose a name that reflects who you are as a company, your company’s culture, and the personality of your brand among other elements.
The First Interaction a Customer Often Has with your Brand is When They See Your Name
The spark of a relationship with your customers begins with an introduction, most often your business’s name. This makes the name you choose a critical component of your branding efforts. You want to convey the right message, connect with your audience, and impress them from the get-go.
Choose a Name that Reflects What you Do
While not mandatory, choosing a name that hints at what you do as a company can help customers who are unaware of your brand word-associate the name with a particular vertical, trade, product or service.
However, going with a name that is too generic, such as “Chicago Web Design Pros”, may reduce your ability to create a strong brand persona in the market. By contrast, choosing an interesting, unique or catchy name may increase the chances of it being remembered by your audience.
Business Names Can be a Powerful Representation
A name can convey a broad range of information about a company as well as appeal to various senses, emotions and needs. The right name can perfectly embrace and communicate succinctly what a brand is about, what they represent, who they are, the values they believe in and the direction they are headed.
The name of your business is highly influential, appealing to a market need and offering a solution through what you offer. This relatable connection can be a powerful driver and influencer of authority, trust, value perception, solution-product fit and more.
Defines your Audience
The name of your business can help narrow down the type of audience that your business is the best fit for. For example, if you are a bar or restaurant, the name of your business should spark some kind of emotion that represents “fun” or “entertainment.” On the other hand, if you are a real estate agency or law office, the words you use to define your business should invoke something more conservative, professional, and trustworthy.
Names with “Sticking Power”
Memorable names with “sticking power” tend to have a bigger impact. From easy recall to brand recognition and even increased media coverage, having a brand name that is virtually unforgettable is a major bonus.
Types of Names that Have Sticking Power are Often:
- Catchy / Rhyming
- Controversial / Taboo
When the goal is to stand out in a sea of competition, thinking outside the box is a necessity.
Avoid Misspellings When Possible
Avoid anything that may be confusing or easily mistyped. For example, although Tumblr is a very popular social media platform, they were lucky when they chose to skip over the “E”. A lot of people are still confused with the spelling of Tumblr and therefore try to spell it Tumbler.
If at all possible, also avoid using just initials. Until you are a Fortune 100 or 500 company with established market share and brand recognition, the use of initials is not only confusing, but it’s also boring.
The use of initials is only personal to those who own, run and work at the company. This same personalization and connection falls short when your mission is to relate to those who want to use your services but
Furthermore, try to avoid abbreviating words such as “for” and “you.” If you have a coffee shop, as an example, your audience will appreciate, react and better remember “Coffee For You” as compared to “Coffee 4 u.” Abbreviations can “cheapen” or diminish brand value and perception, may lead to mistyping when it comes to search engine traffic, and could end up infringing on another brand who has used the full name vs the abbreviated version.
Be unique, but also direct in the message you’re trying to get across. Unless your business has branded themselves with the number 4, it is best to stick with the word.
Domain Name, Trademark and Copyright Considerations
In today’s digital age and globally connected economy, there are more considerations than ever before that need to go into choosing a business name.
- Is the TLD (.com, .net. etc.) available?
- How much traffic will you lose by going with a .net vs a .com?
- Do other businesses exist that have used that same domain name and could this cause confusion?
- Is the domain name too long to remember or hard to spell?
Copyright and Trademark:
- Even if your domain is available, is it trademarked or copyrighted?
We hope that you found this brief guide on the importance of business names useful. If you need further assistance or would like to set up a strategy session to brainstorm ideas, reach out to us today. We’d love to learn more about how we can help your business.