Naming Your Business: What the experts say
Most articles and blog posts about naming a business start with the same observations: Naming is important …and challenging.
It’s important because a good name can help a good business succeed; and a bad name can have a negative effect on your prospects. And it’s challenging because there’s so much to consider aside from finding a name that you like - from competitor conflicts and domain availability, to trademark protection.
Important? Difficult? I think some expert advice is called for!
Check out these tips and insights on naming your business
You might find some useful insights in these recent posts by Jodi Helmer on Entrepreneur.com, Simon Brooke in The Telegraph and Peter Economy on Inc. Also worth checking out is this, also from Entrepreneur.com and this from Forbes.
In these articles, you’ll find some great input from some of the business naming world’s leading experts - here’s just a taster:
Steve Manning, founder of naming agency Igor
“You can spend a lot of money on ads to tell people how your company is different, or you can paint "Virgin" on the side of a plane.”
Uri Baruchin, strategy director of brand agency The Partners
“A descriptive name makes the proposition clear but isn’t very easy to own.”
Jim Prior, CEO of branding agency Lambie-Nairn
“Go with what feels right.”
Simon Myers, partner at brand consultancy, Prophet
“Does it sound like someone else’s business? If yes then avoid. Is it difficult to pronounce? If so, ditch it.”
Michael Barr, president of NameLab
“Coined names can be more meaningful than existing words….New words [can be] both meaningful and unique.”
Alexandra Watkins, chief innovation officer at Eat My Words
“Don't curse your name with any disadvantages. Every time you have to help people spell, pronounce, and understand your name, you are essentially apologizing for it, which devalues your brand."
Choose a name with brandability
When you're naming your business, you have the opportunity to give it a name that could become a valuable business asset - a brand name.
And although the experts might not agree on all of the details, the overall consensus will be clear - to increase the chances of choosing a name that has brandability, your name should:
- be easy to say, spell and remember
- stand out and be different in style from your competitors
- show personality and character
- avoid generic words and common keywords
- be evocative not descriptive
- be ownable and protectable
- have an available .com domain