So how do you create a winning business name? First thing is to get your family,
friends and/or colleagues
together for a business name brainstorming session and work through these six rules:
1) A winning business name has to be memorable – but easy to spell.
Obviously, your potential customers need to be able to remember your business name,
but they also need to be able to find it easily if they’re looking for it in a telephone
directory or on the internet, so choosing a business name such as ‘What-cha-ma-call-it’
is a bad idea. Having a unique name is good thing but it can become counter productive
if people do not know (or remember) how to spell it.
2) A winning business name needs a visual element.
What popped into your head when you read ‘What-cha-ma-call-it’? Nothing right? Most
people don’t visualize anything when they read this business name, but generally
we are hard-wired to “seeing” images when we read or hear language, so incorporating
a visual element into your business name can be a powerful aid to customers’ memory
(and also a powerful advertising tool for you in the future).
3) A winning business name has to have a positive connotation.
Many words have both denotation (literal meaning) and connotation (emotional meaning).
A word’s connotation can be positive, neutral or negative, depending on the emotional
associations that people generally make. The classic example is the difference between
“Home” (which has a positive connotation) and “House” (which has a neutral connotation).
So when creating a business name make sure you’re choosing words that havepositive
connotations so that people can associate them with your business – also make sure
these connotations are suitable for your business. For example, if you are starting
a transportation business, you don’t want to have a weak sounding or negative name,
such as “Butterfly Transport” or “Breakdown Trucking”. You’ll want a name that conveys
strength and reliability. A choice such as “Stallion Transport” or “Sure-hold Trucking”
would be much better. Notice how these names have a strong visual element.
4) A winning business name needs to include information about what your business
Chances are good that your new business is not going to become a universal brand
(like Ferrari or BP) overnight so having a name like ‘Kildoe’ or ‘A-Jay’s’ won’t
let people know what you do unless you give clues as to what your business is about,
like ‘Kildoe Cars’ or ‘A-Jay’s Engine Oil’ That’s the reason why you see so many
landscaping businesses that have the word “landscaping” in their name, and hair styling
businesses that include words such as “salon” or “hair designs” in their names.Including
information about what your business does in your business name also makes it easier
for potential customers/clients to find your business in phone books and directories
(both off and online).
5) A winning business name has to be fairly short.
Once again this is vital because you want customers to be able to remember your business’s
name, but it’s also important for promotional purposes. You want a business name,
for example, that will fit well on a business card, look good displayed on a sign
or in an ad, and perhaps even a business name that will serve well as a domain name
and show up well in search engines if you have an online business.
6) Colourful business name.
One last tip is to think about colours when you’re choosing a business name. Colours
will be an important component of your business logo and other business promotion
materials such as your future business website, etc. Colours have strong emotional
associations, too. Red, for instance, is an aggressive colour; its fiery elements
are associated with speed, excitement and passion while green is a calming colour
associated with growth, renewal and nature. You’ll want to create at least two winning
business names, and three is even better, because once you’ve chosen a business name,
the next step is to register it and your first choice may already be taken.
So do you now have a winning business name that meets the requirements of all six
rules above? Good! Hopefully you’ll be living with the name for your new business
for a long time – and it will continue to attract new business.