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HAVING TROUBLE NAMING YOUR NEW BUSINESS?

Naming your new business or coming up with a brand name can be an overwhelming and nerve-wrecking task.  Unfortunately, not every entrepreneur or business owner has access or the budget to consult professional branding gurus or top-notch advertising agencies.  

 

And if you've reach here, then you are probably going through what I have more times than I can count.  But hopefully I can help! As a hobby, I have supported and guided many businesses and NGOs in coming up with brand names, names of products, and company names alike.  Below you will find a list of helpful tips and questions that will help guide you.  

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Tip Summary:

  1. Do your research before, during, and after selecting a name

  2. Have a long-term brand identity in mind

  3. Make sure you define the channels you want to sell through, i.e. online, face-to-face, distribution vs retail etc.

  4. Protect your brand and brand associations

  5. Be confident of your selection and trust your gut!

Getting Started

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Starting out can be made easier if you understand your business model, who your target customers are, and the long-term vision of your brand.  Whether it is a new project, a new brand under an existing business, or a new venture from scratch, the concept remains the same.  Answering the right questions will help you through the process.  The questions below are in no particular order.

  • What products and services will you be selling?

  • What kind of business will you be running and in which industry?

  • What is more important, the product or the company? The product functionality or the brand?

Example: filling up gas at a gas station - we all remember where we filled up our tank (or charged our car), but we rarely care which company sold the gas to the gas station or who provided the solar panels.

  • What kind of positioning do you want and how do you want your brand to be perceived?

  • What products will you develop in the future? 

  • Will your products differ from your company name? Will the product be part of a series of products or can the brand name of the company be the name of the product?

  • In the long-term, what will you be remembered by more? Your product name or your company name?

  • Who is your target market? Will you be a B2B, B2C, or C2C business?  Will it be a long or short sales cycle?

  • What channels will you be selling through? 

  • How do you want people to find you?

  • Who will be purchasing your product? Who is the final decision maker? ​​​

  • Who are your competitors?

  • What naming convention or formula are the industry leaders following?

 

It is always important to know your market before you enter and no better way to do so than at the absolute beginning.  Your new brand may be the one that will take your industry by surprise. 

 

Finalizing a Name

Once you have done your research and you know exactly what

you want to do, it is time to make a selection.  Regardless of

the budget you set aside, the tips below can act as a checklist

for you.  First thing to do is to scribble down names off the

top of your head that you think would suit your business.

  • How does it sound phonetically? 

  • Is it pronounceable?

  • Is it brandable?

  • Does it have a meaning in another language that maybe your target market speaks?

  • Is it easy to associate with your product or will you have to invest in product awareness?

  • Is the domain name available?  Research which extension would suit your business the most i.e. NGO, informative website, eCommerce etc.  Always remember that cookies are a blessing! But also make sure you know how you want your customers to reach you i.e through an application, website, search engine, yellow-pages etc.  Many people stress over the domain when it may not even be important.  It all depends on your target market, how you will reach and interact with your customers, and how your customers will reach you.

  • Are the social handles available?  If the likes of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube etc. will be important to your business, then these should be available and secured.

  • Can you trademark your brand name and logo?  Can you gain legal control over it?

  • Do you want to have a mascot, logo etc? Will it be easy to represent with the name you have chosen or will the brand logo be the name?  It may be too early to tell, but something to think about.

  • Have you asked your friends, partners, colleagues what they think?  You can also run surveys through free survey providers that you can find online.  Be sure to ask what the person taking the survey thinks the brand represents, what that brand would be selling, and an adjective associated with the name.​  The bigger the budget and time you have available, the more people you can survey.  If you have a budget set aside, then a marketing research consultancy will definitely help.  Knowing your target market will make this process even more beneficial.

 

Still Stuck?

Some ideas I go through when helping others come up with names:

  • Research names that represent your product

  • Adjectives describing your product values or what a customer should feel after using your product

  • Adjectives describing your product or service

  • Play on words (though I would recommend you not use numbers for words, especially for a website name)

  • Have you looked at other words in other languages?

  • Have you tried a business name generator? Many are available online.

  • Have you used a Thesaurus?  Use an online one and go from page to page to get more ideas.

  • Do you have a marketing budget?  Many marketing, communication, and advertising agencies have creative personnel as well as marketing researchers that can definitely help.

Feel free to reach out to me if you are still stuck.  My objective is to encourage entrepreneurs to chase their business passions, and if I can help along the way then I hope I was able to do so (and when time permits, I am available for a quick chat)!

 

Check back in regularly for more helpful guidelines regarding domain name selection and other branding tips.

If you have any questions or require any assistance, please do not hesitate to reach out through the contact form below and we can take it from there.  I am based out of Dubai, United Arab Emirates (+4 GMT) for you to know in case there is a delay in my response.  Please include a quick introduction.

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