In the world of Uber, Google, Tesla and Twitter – how many more killer names are out there to make your business stand out. Plenty if you think the right way.
1. Make your name memorable but keep it simple
Ideally your name should be short and clear to inform your people what you do. And you want it to be search engine savvy. So do you go quirky or functional – a lot depends on your product or service and your audience. Take your cue from Ikea’s Ingvar Kamprad who simply used his initials and the first letters of the farm and village where he grew up to name his global success story. And be sure to listen to how it sounds when spoken out loud. This may sound stranger but all the most memorable brand names roll off the tongue. If it’s hard to say will people talk about it? And talkability drives business.
2. Avoid acronyms, really long names and obscure meanings
IBM was International Business Machines before it became IBM – its took a lot of brand equity to be able to become an acronym. On the other end of the spectrum, overly long names that describe every element of your business are confusing, boring and a nightmare to Google. And to that end – some of the best names become their service or product – other great examples are Kleenex, Hoover and Uber, so consider active words. Made up or unusual words work if they’re easy to explain – the minute you need a few sentences to explain, you’ve lost us.
3. Listen to what people are saying about you
We love this name that the guys at Fortune talk about. Big Ass Fans came about because the founder realised that what people were ringing up and asking for, not HVLS Fan Co. (although his expansion into lighting prompted a refresh to Big Ass Solutions). The moral to the story is they listened to the customer’s perception of their products and made it work in their favour. Genius and memorable.
4. Check you can actually use your name everywhere
You need to register your business and domain names, potentially get a trademark, design a logo and brand your payment solutions and bank accounts. And think about expansion – if you want to go beyond our borders make sure your name and tagline does not get lost in translation, like American Motors whose launch of the Matador car in 1970s Puerto Rico failed because the name translates to ‘killer’ in Spanish – not great for driver confidence as Business News Daily reveal.
5. Ensure your name will get noticed by the right people
Brand reputation and integrity can be made or broken at the first introduction – you need to be taken seriously and be aligned with your product or service offering. And getting noticed by the RIGHT people – your dream customers is critical. And that comes back to the first point – be memorable but simple is key to a killer brand name.