So you've got this great business idea, you've done your research and can see a niche in the market, you've thought about your plan of attack - but how do you go about naming the bloody thing?! It's a tough one, and can be the first stumbling block for most businesses - your business name should represent your product or service, be catchy and memorable, it will be the cornerstone for how you design your branding....no pressure then!
I took to twitter to see how some of my fave businesses had decided on their name - and the response was so varied; Jimmy and His Girl is named after their grandparents (awh!), Brides-made have used a clever play on words and Kissair Candles is from the name of a racehorse! It goes to show there are no right or wrong ways! But here are a few things to keep in mind;
- Check out your competition - you want something distinctive from your competitors, to set you apart; a few years ago, Rock n Rose and Regal Rose both popped onto the scene and had very similar directions with their jewellery, it was difficult to tell which brand was which! Also worth checking with companies house that no-one is trading under the same name within your field - the rules change depending on country, and business type, but get yourself registered if applicable ASAP.
- Check your name is available on all social media platforms - you want consistency, it's one of the biggest bugbearers in my business life that we have to make do with variations! Consistency across Facebook, twitter, Instagram and pinterest etc is super professional and makes it really easy for people to find you. Your chosen name is available? Great, grab them all NOW. Even if you don't intend on using LinkedIn, Googleplus or Vine, the Blogcademy Headmistresses preach that if one of these platforms does become the next big thing, you won't have to make to do with having a 1 on the end of your handle!
- Same goes for your website - And if you can afford to, buy both to .com and .co.uk versions. I sat waiting for crownandglory.co.uk to become available for 18 months! When it finally did I snapped it right up. 123reg offer a backorder service - for a small fee, you'll be notified when your chosen domain does become available, so if your domain is taken, not being used and is up for renewal soon (you can check this at lookup.ws) don't let it put you off (but have a plan B!)
- Keep it short and sweet - because inevitably, if you don't, it'll become shortened, think ASOS and NOTHS. If you just have to have a supercalifragilisticly long name, make sure it can be shortened easily and without embarrassment - and buy up that domain, too!
I guess you're probably wondering how we came up with Crown and Glory? I worried you'd ask that, and it's nowhere near as interesting tale as some have asked in the past - no, it's not named after a pub, and no, it isn't a derivative from my surname (but I wish I'd been that clever!) I sat down with a pen and paper and scribbled all sorts of words and phrases to do with hair - crowning glory jumped out at me, but I knew I wanted a name with an 'and' in it (I have no idea why!) and so, Crown and Glory was born. I didn't check any domains, or social media, or consider that my google alerts would be filled with religious excerpts - hindsight is a wonderful thing!
Image via ban.do