Three important considerations when choosing your business name

It’s one of the first decisions business owners make.  It’s one of the most important marketing decisions we make.  Yet, it does not always get the proper consideration when we make it.

That decision is the name of your business.  So what’s the name of your business?  More importantly, what does your business name say about your business?

The name of your business sends a very clear message to your customers and potential customers.  The question is, “Does it send the right message?”

There are a number of important considerations when choosing the name of your business that can help make your marketing more effective

A business name often reflects the competitive advantage of that business.  For example, “Main Street Embroidery” emphasizes the business location.  Or “Affordable Logo Apparel” emphasizes price as a competitive advantage.  “Mary’s Embroidery” puts the emphasis on the business owner, Mary as the thing that makes it most unique.

So your first question for consideration is “What makes our business unique or gives it a competitive advantage?”  Is it our location, service, pricing, quality, etc., etc.

Another consideration is the use of a descriptive word or phrase.  In my industry, embroidery is a common descriptive word that many business owners use.  The advantage is obvious-using a word like that makes it very clear what you do.

However, there can be a disadvantage to using a descriptive word like embroidery.  First of all, it is very hard to spell which may make it more challenging for people to find and do business with you.  Also, embroidery is not a word that rolls off the tongue easily when you are talking to people or answering the phone.

If that is the case with your descriptive word, you may choose to consider another word.

A final consideration is the URL or web address.  Is your potential company name available as a .com?  If not, you may have to consider an alternative or an alternative url.  For example, Threadlogic.com was not available.  It has already been purchased by someone.  Therefore, we went to www.Thread-Logic.com.  By adding the dash (-) in the middle made it unique enough that is was available for purchase.

Other options include adding the word “online” to the url or maybe a location like “ABCminnesota.com.

Those were just three of many things I took into consideration when trying to come up with the name of my business.

One quick thought on business names and I don’t mean to offend anyone, but there are some words that have been overused and therefore are really no longer effective in a business name.  A couple that come to mind are “global”, “solutions” and “creative”.  I have often made the argument that any business that uses the word “creative” in their name isn’t very creative.

I’m sure many of you reading this probably already have a business name.  So what if things have changed in your company and/or your industry and your business name does not reflect what you do or your competitive advantage?  Can you change it?  Absolutely!

Some will make the argument that changing an established business name is a marketing no-no.  I will argue not making a change is a bigger no-no.  If what you do and what makes you different from your competition is not accurately reflected in your name, you have to change it.  It is short-term cost, but long-term gain.

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