Though you may think it inconsequential, settling on a good business name will be an integral part of your overall business strategy and the cornerstone of your brand.
How cool that you have decided to start your own business!! You’ve got the plan in place, you know what services you’ll be providing, have the office space and stapler and inspirational quotes framed on the wall, all you need now is a name.
Naming your business should be a reasonably easy process, and yet is an agonizing decision for some. There’s a lot to consider when choosing a good business name, and a few guidelines you may want to follow.
Using Your Own Name
A good business name should be memorable; something that hooks the reader into recalling it with ease. At its most basic, you could simply use your name plus whatever service/services you offer, such as: “Jane Smith, Digital Marketing”, or “Emma Duncan, HR.” Not terribly creative, but it gets the job done.
One positive of a self-named small business is that having a unique name (or pseudonym, if you want to go that route) can differentiate you from the competition. Conversely, if you have a very common name, that can bury you in a generic mix of names and make it hard for you to stand out.
Creating a Unique Name
It’s often better to name your business as its own entity. It will sound more professional and suggests that it is a full-fledged company, potentially with a staff and long established history.
Use positive language, to evoke emotions. Inspire, accomplish, build, lead, nurture, etc.
One thing to avoid is giving it a super esoteric name that has little or nothing to do with what you offer. You want the name to suggest success and what can happen if a client hires you.
None of these are hard and fast rules—ultimately a good business name can be whatever you want it to be, and there are plenty of business names that go against everything above and have still found success. Though remember—names have power and can convey feelings and emotions. What image do you want yours to project?
Matthew Ogden is a Minneapolis-based copywriter and content writer and editor. He’s written for national retailers and lobster roll companies alike. When not writing he can be found nose deep in a book, writing and performing music, or nerding out about guitar tone.