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    1. Lewis 23 is offline

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      #1

      How To Choose Your Company Name

      Hi all. I am trying to decide on a name for my company, my store – does anybody have any suggestions on how to choose a company name?

      I mean, are there any things that I should be looking out for or avoiding? Why is the name so important anyway?
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    2. Green devil is offline

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      The company name or your brand is the first and foremost introduction to the world. It makes an impression – negative or positive, bracketing you before you have even had a chance to say what you do. Think of a French sounding name – people assume style, sophistication and class. That is the power of a name. Companies are known to create sub brands to leverage the power of the parent brand or try and move away from the original brand name in a an attempt to position their products in the most relevant way in the customers mind.

      Companies fight and settle on the brand when they split up – The name alone can sometimes be worth more than the actual asset worth of any company. For this reason, it is important to spend a lot of time researching the best possible name for your company. Some tips that I can give:

      • Make sure that the name you choose is easily accepted by people all over the world. Some names can be very tough to pronounce and end up sounding really funny or weird by people of other countries.
      • Make sure that the word you choose, does not have an embarrassing, funny or idiotic translation in any other language. We live in a global world and there is no saying where your customers will be from. If your products are targeted towards a specific age group or community, be sure to do a focus group to see how they react to it.
      • The name should not hurt any religious sentiments or ideologies. Spoofs, caricatures and such like are best avoided in both name and company logo.
      • While the name should relate to the products in some way, it is best to not define your niche too narrowly. As you grow, so will your product range and sub brands/new brands cost a lot of money to advertise.
      • Local products can benefit from using the name of the city/town though that can become a disadvantage if you expand beyond it.
      • Depending on the kind of customer you are appealing to, see if your chosen name has more traditional connotations or modern ones. Choosing one over the other can alienate the other so you might be better off with a combination of the two.
      • Avoid catch phrases or `in fashion’ terms that may get dated soon and will sound redundant.
      • A name that starts with an alphabet that comes early will ensure early entry in a Yellow Pages and other directory type listing.
      • You can try and create a specific trading or seller name while the corporate company name is more universally appealing.
      • Also avoid very complicated sounding name which is difficult to pronunce – the easier it is to remember, the better it will be for your business interests.
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    3. Whizkid is offline

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      #3
      I think choosing the company name is one of the most important as well as fun part of opening a business. Please don’t name it after yourself and your future generations to come – that is just so not cool. I would suggest you opt for a contemporary word or combination of words that actually stands for something – something that intrigues, excites and evokes curiosity. Something that has some `stick’ value – stays in people’s minds.

      Gummy bears for example – what a name; Smuckers jam – another great one… I could go on. I suggest you come up with a shortlist and run it by friends as well, for opinions. I think a good company name can cut your advertising budget by half.

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      #4
      A company name and logo is used everywhere – On your signage, advertisements, website, events, employee uniforms and all other media with which you broadcast your presence to the world. You cannot afford to have something trivial or silly.

      It is important for the name to have some kind of personality to start with to give you an edge in the market place. Actually it’s the combination of a great company name, logo and byline that makes for a winning combination. Think of Nike – the whoosh and the `Just Do It

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      #5
      My advice would be to select a brand name that is not a “me too”. Too many people try and piggy back on another established brand name but I think that kind of success is short lived. Customers see you as an imposter if you are the weaker party and there is needless confusion with other brands when and if you become more successful.

      There is also the threat of a lawsuit as and when the other party becomes aware of your existence which not only means more cost but also your business name being taken away from you. Needless effort all around.

    6. Green devil is offline

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      #6
      A rose will smell as sweet by any other name. A name is only so much in the sense that many companies have become successful despite very ordinary names but I think it helps give a head start to people who choose them carefully. It’s just another tool in a highly competitive market place. Why not make use of it? Abstract or specific, functional or creative, changing company name can be very expensive so it is best to find something that you can live with for a long time.

      All else being equal, a powerful company name can give you a much needed boost in an overcrowded market place where customers have short memories.

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      #7
      It is always a great idea to try and combine the personal and professional. Like putting in your name but in a non obvious sort of way. Feeds your ego without compromising professional interests.

      Also try the below list – Get it off some internet site: SMILE: Simple, meaningful, imagery, legs and emotional – If you didn’t get the legs part – it alludes to the ability to `carry’ the brand. These elements apparently go into making a good name.

      They had an equally interesting thing for stuff to avoid: SCRATCH: spelling challenged or difficult to spell, copycat ( similar to competitive names), random ( not pertinent to what you are selling), annoying , `curse of knowledge’ ( only insiders understand it) and hard to pronounce.

    8. Whizkid is offline

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      #8
      There are some actual rules for business names for sole traders, partnerships and limited partnerships; name cannot be offensive, it cannot include the terms `public limited company’, `limited liability partnership (LLP) or any Welsh equivalent. Lastly it cannot contain prescribed or sensitive words or expressions unless you have permission to use them.

      In case you register a limited partnership, you have to include either 'Limited Partnership' or 'LP' at the end of the chosen business name. And in case your registered office happens to be in Wales, you can also use a Welsh equivalent of either of these terms.

      Make sure you find out all necessary rules and laws pertaining to your name choice.

    9. Green devil is offline

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      #9
      You may also want to check if the name that you have chosen after such care and deliberation does not already belong to someone else. Sadly, all the good ones seem to be taken already. You could check the internet, local phone books or any other business directories. You could also check with the registration office.

      In fact even a name that sounds or is similar to an established business’s name can often be contested.

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      #10
      If all else fails, go with something that sounds right to you. At the end of the day, a company name is just one aspect of your business. Once your business is successful, everybody conducts retrospective studies on why the name helped.

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