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Three Steps For Deciding on the Ideal Business Name

Guest blog post by: Grant Polachek

Scrolling through sites such as Facebook and Instagram gets you bombarded with advertisements from companies worldwide. So much that it can be challenging to recall the last few you saw. For this reason, you can no longer just stick an extra word to your last name and call it the perfect business name. 

To be successful, you must find a business name that’s memorable, catchy, and aligns with your business identity. In fact, it’s so important that some companies devote their existence to helping clients find the perfect business name. Yet, regardless of how important the process is, it doesn’t have to be complicated. Our experts at Squadhelp have assisted over 35,000 customers with the process, and we know that there are three main steps you must take. 

1. Plan Your Brand

The first step to finding the perfect business name is figuring out every aspect of your brand. Remember, your venture is what you do, but your brand is how customers perceive you. 

When starting, ask yourself these questions: 

  • How should your brand look and feel?
  • What tone will you embody?
  • What are your core values?
  • What emotions do you want to evoke from clients?
  • How do you compare to your competition?
  • What value does your company bring to the market?

Once you’ve answered these questions and have developed a clear brand identity, you’re ready to move on to the next step. 

2. Brainstorm Names & Create a Shortlist

Use this step to have some fun. Gather your team, close friends, or family members and start writing down every idea that comes to mind. Just remember that this step isn’t meant to be analytical, so you’re not analyzing each name as it appears. Instead, you’re making a list of words or phrases associated with your brand’s identity, including the good and bad. 

If you need help adding some zing to your ideas, check out some of these tools: 

  • Thesaurus
  • Naming Competitions
  • Online dictionaries or sites that offer rhyming words, describing words, or industry slang

At the end of this step, you should have a long list of possible names. So, now you must go through and begin removing names that don’t align with your brand or customer values, those that may have negative connotations, those that are hard to pronounce, and so on. 

This step is completed when you have a list of 10 or fewer solid name options. 

3. Validate Your Choices

Perhaps if you’re lucky, your top choice will be a smashing success, but this is hardly ever the case. So, before you decide on the perfect business name, you must put it through a few tests. 

  • Audience Feedback: Do you remember why you started the naming process in the first place? To secure a name that both stays with and inspires customers. It’s only fitting that before you make a final decision, you should see if your target audience responds well. You can ask friends, family, neighbors, coworkers, or even strangers you meet at a coffee shop. Just be sure to remain detached from the names, as your pick may not be the audience’s top choice. 
  • Secure a Domain: Websites are basically non-negotiable; your business must have one. As you’d imagine, many of the best domains are already in use or cost a fortune. So, during this step, you may have to get creative and change the spelling, remove vowels, use a less popular domain extension, or even pick a new name altogether. 
  • Trademark Test: Most people aren’t fans of this step, but it can save a lot of headaches down the road. Since many words carry a certain level of trademark, it’s worth putting your name through the test to avoid legal issues later. 

Conclusion

Choosing the right brand name can make all the difference for your business. The perfect business name can indeed help guarantee success, but a wrong choice can make your marketing efforts fall flat. 

So, ensure that you put forth enough time and effort into picking the perfect business name. Just remember that to do so, you’ll need to fully understand your brand’s identity, brainstorm potential names, shortlist your favorites, and then validate your top picks by collecting audience feedback, checking for a domain, and conducting the trademark test. Doing these steps may take time, but they will also ensure that you choose the perfect name for your business. 
Grant Polachek is the head of branding for Squadhelp.com, 3X Inc 5000 startup and disruptive naming agency. Squadhelp has reviewed more than 1 million names and curated a collection of the best available names on the web today. We are also the world’s leading crowdsource naming platform, supporting clients such as Nestle, Dell, Nuskin, and AutoNation.

⚡️  @sonrisastudio  ⚡️

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