Branding: How to Choose the Perfect Name
First impressions matter – especially in the business world. Potential customers will form instant opinions about you based on your name, whether good or bad. Choosing the wrong name will hurt your business by hampering your ability to convert new customers. And there’s a whole host of reasons that your name might not be successful – too long, too confusing, or it could even land you in legal trouble.
Finding the right name isn’t easy, but possible with a few brainstorming sessions and some online tools. When deciding on your business’ name, there are three main factors to consider: its sound and feel, domain availability, and uniqueness. Getting any of those three factors wrong can seriously harm your chances of success – or even end up costing you your business.
Sound and Feel
Your business name should sound and feel ‘right.’ This isn’t always an easy criterion to put into clear words, but every name has a certain feel to it. Finding the right feel will depend on your targeted niche. If you’re starting a financial advisory company, you’ll want something that feels dependable and reliable. If you’re a party rental company, you can go in more creative or fun direction. But either way, the idea remains the same: find a name that expresses values important to your target audience.
Closely related to feeling is the sound of your name. Some names look great on paper, have the right feel, but just don’t flow when spoken. This is especially important is you plan to advertise on radio and TV – or are counting on word-of-mouth exposure. Make sure you say your name out loud a few times to make sure you won’t be tripping customers with a tongue twister.
For many small businesses, domain registration comes as an afterthought. But given today’s digital landscape, it is a mistake to not check domain availability before choosing a name. Treating your domain registration as an afterthought leads to all sorts of silly modifiers on URLs – from lesser known TLDs (.io, .me, .pro, etc.) to adding prefixes like my- and get-.
For example, here at Fusion Group USA our website is fusiongroupusa.com – it’s simple, easy to remember, and to-the-point. But if we went with myfusiongroupusa.pro, we’d have a difficult time directing customers to our website. What’s more, whoever owned fusiongroupusa.com would be reaping the rewards of our advertising efforts. Your domain doesn’t have to be an exact match – but it should make sense and be memorable.
Remember in school when you shared first names with a classmate? It led to all sorts of confusion. The same applies to your business – but now there’s a whole lot more money on the line. There are two ways to slip up when it comes to a unique name. The first is to be too generic; the second is to be too similar to a competitor.
You want your business name to advertise what you do, and not limit your scalability – so I understand the appeal of a generic name but it will leave you forgettable and faceless. The other mistake is being too close to a competitor. Going this route could either cause confusion among your customers or even land you in legal trouble.
Starting a business isn’t easy – it takes a ton of time and resources. There is always a temptation to cut corners at the beginning when funds and time are tight. But skimping out on branding and marketing decisions early on will just cause problems down the road. When it comes to choosing a name for your business – you don’t want to get two years into the business and realize you need to change it.
Fusion Group USA offers comprehensive branding services and marketing consulting. We can help you get your business off on the right foot – ready to grow, scale, and make you money! Or you can go it alone and face the same problems when you’re busier, have more customers, and more to lose. If you need help branding your business, contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation!