5 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
There is no second chance for a first impression. As a business, the first impression, the first contact, is with your brand name, and a good name is everything. It is the central theme and the very foundation on which your business stands. Everything else revolves around it.
When people hear your brand name, it should immediately give them an idea of what your business is. Whether this is true depends on the effectiveness and relevance of your business name to your business. Imagine a brand called “Oblivious Designs.” What first comes to mind? Fashion? Architecture? Now imagine that this brand tells you they are into food production and distribution, or that they are a security company.
Be conscious of the fact that whenever people hear your business name, they start forming mental pictures of what your business is about. Therefore, you must take due care and give proper thought to your choice of a business name.
Your business name confers identity on your business. Many businesses have failed simply because they chose the wrong business name. Choosing an effective name is vital to how your brand is perceived, which affects how it will be received in the market. Below are four clues that will help you choose an effective business name.
1. Your choice keywords are in high demand
The key element of an effective business name is that it can attract traffic on its own. Your ideal business should be solving a problem that people have. If it is, then people should already be searching for the solutions you provide.
With tools from Google such as Google Trends and the search function, you can find details of how people are searching for your business solution. With Google Trends, you can keep track of past trends in line with your business offering. You can also see current trends and determine how it affects your business and choice of a business name.
If you are looking to choose an effective business name, you must already have suggestions in mind. The point here is to plug those keywords into tools. These tools would show you the demand for those keywords. If your chosen keywords are in high demand, you are unto something.
2. Your business name options are original
There is hardly anything new under the sun. But choosing a business name that is already in use is a bad idea. Rather than impress people, this will turn them off. Worse still, you may never hit the ground running as the existing name will overshadow yours until it becomes non-existent.
Imagine that another brand springs up today with the name ‘Mark Donalds’. Not only can they get sued, but they would also earn the dislike of the larger populace. People want to see that you put in the necessary effort in your quest to serve them.
Business naming could be a tough process, no doubt, but the end is rewarding. A good brand is known for originality, ingenuity, and authenticity. With these qualities, everything that represents the brand and everything the brand stands for becomes valuable to her target audience.
Take advantage of different business naming services and their plethora of naming methods. One such service asks you to input the keywords that represent your business. With these keywords, it will generate some combinations and name options that could work for your brand. An example is NameOyster which generates names using artificial intelligence.
Another good example is Brand New Name. They offer a crowdsourced approach to business naming. The way it works is that they will give you access to a platform to run a contest and engage hundreds of talented creatives who will generate inspiring and innovative name ideas for your product and business. And to ensure that you get the best result, a prize is awarded to the best idea, driving the creatives to offer powerful options in hopes of winning.
3. Make sure your keywords are legally available
As many experienced business owners can attest, it is possible to come up with an amazing business name, start working on the brand identity creation (including logo and other branding items), only to find out that the business name is not legally available for use.
To avoid wasting effort and resources, consider the legal availability of your options. The regulatory bodies usually have a business availability checker on their portals. You can also file for a business name availability check physically.
Once you can confirm that your options are available, it is easier for you to pick the most effective one to help you build a sustainable brand. The business naming process can easily become frustrating if you end the brand naming process only to realize your efforts were wasted on unavailable names.
4. Your options are user-friendly
If your potential users are going to struggle with pronouncing your business name, you might just be setting your business up for failure.
Using unfamiliar names are fine as long as they are easy to pronounce. You don’t want people guessing or in the dark about any detail that pertains to your business and your brand identity.
Put yourself in the shoes of your target audience. Read your business name options out loud to yourself. Get other people’s thoughts and watch how easy it is for them to pronounce it. Your business exists to serve people, make it about them.
There are tons of tips for naming your business, but the clues shared in this article would help you get ahead of the pile and pick an effective name for your business.