Nothing is more important when you open a business than choosing the right name for it. A name can make or break your chances to be memorable and convincing. It is your face to the world, your most important element of branding and the expression of what sets you apart in your own industry. So how do you pick a name for your business as a successful part of your marketing strategy? Follow these steps.
1. Look around at what others do
You can learn a lot from analyzing your own reactions to what others do. Start by making a list of famous stores, restaurants or businesses in your particular industry or niche, then analyze them. What do the names suggests? Why do you think they stick? How did they come to be?
2. Start close to home
Do not underestimate the source of inspiration you can find in the names of your family members. You can also start by considering your own name. Maggie’s Cookies or Tom’s Boots can be great options if you build your business in a small town, where being personable can go a long way. Even in a big city, such names have a ring of familiarity and attract customers that are tired of big-store impersonal services.
3. Find inspiration in your own products
The products you make or sell are the most obvious place where you can find inspiration. After all, you want your customers to know right away what you’re all about. If you are opening a restaurant, for example, go through your menu items and see if your name pops up from somewhere in there. Maybe it’s your most popular dish or the name of your famous sauce.
There is no reason why you shouldn’t have fun when you pick a name for your business. Have a family meeting or invite everyone to dinner, then ask them the question, and let them write down the names that come to their mind. Vote for the best ones, and see where that takes you.
5. Check the competition
After you narrowed down the ideas and put together a short list of favorite name options, check online for any competition. When it comes to business names, you don’t want to compete with anyone in the industry, especially if you want to create a franchise in the future.
6. Check the domain names
To exist in the very competitive market today, sooner or later you will have to build a website that promotes your business. It is a good idea to make sure that there are domain names available that are built around the name of your business. Once you decide on a name and build your brand around it, it’s a little bit late to find out that the domain name you need is unavailable.
7. Check potential trademark
Another important step is to check if your name is trademarked in your industry. (If the name is trademarked in another industry, it’s OK.) To do this, go to the U.S Patent and Trademark Office online, and start by finding your industry code (for example, the restaurant industry). Then type in your name, and see what shows up. If the name is trademarked, you’ll have to consider something else and retake a few of the steps above. Don’t forget to have fun during this process – after all, brainstorming doesn’t cost a thing, while the whole process can be very instructive.
If you are thinking to open a new business or are in the process of rebranding and remodeling your existing business, contact us to get a free consultation from Mindful Design Consulting. Click HERE to price your project design.
Also, take a look at “Branding By Interior” e-book, the only book written on this subject at this time. It brings insight on how you can turn your business into a market-dominating competitor by using human cognitive responses.