Branding Blog

Brand Development - What does your company name say about you?

Written by Dale Berkebile | Wed, May 20, 2009

Positioning your company in the market is an extremely important process where many companies fall-short or unintentionally position themselves weakly. Carelessly naming your company, products or services causes a long-term drain on your company.

This is one of the first things that should be done with a company or redone if it was not taken seriously in the past. A name can help you establish trust and build credibility.  If you do not know where to start in this strategic process it is wise to hire a professional to guide you.

Many entrepreneurs just pull a name out of thin air or throw their name into the title of their company. The problem is long-term this will be very limiting, provide a small-time impression or worse bleed your marketing budget dry.

Back in the days of the yellow pages as your main source of advertising, you would see companies trying to out-smart the listing by naming their company something like AAAA Plumbers or 123 Cleaners. Sadly, this is still happening. Yes, this may get you listed first in the yellow pages or any alpha-numeric listing, but is it really worth using a poor name for the life of your company to get listed first? We do not think so. In my mind, I know this is a gimmick to try and get more business, but my question to companies like this would be - is the quality of your work unable to build more solid leads than the first listing?

 Ideally the quality of your work and customer service would get you word of mouth leads, creating viral marketing and also build strength and credibility in a solid name.

 Here are a few tips to creating a good strong name for your brand (company, product or service):

  1. Distinctiveness: Does it stand out from the crowd?
  2. Brevity: Is it short enough to be remembered and easily used?
  3. Appropriateness: Does it say something about what the company does?
  4. Easy to spell and pronounce: Will people be able to spell the name after hearing it spoken? Can they pronounce it after seeing it written?
  5. Likability: Will people enjoy using it? Names that are intellectually stimulating or provide a good "mouth feel," have a head start over those that don't.
  6. Extendability: Does it have legs? Does it suggest a visual interpretation or lend itself to a number of creative executions? Great names provide endless opportunities for brandplay (wordplay).
  7. Protectability: Can it be trademarked? Is it available for web use?
Competition is tough… get brand wise by creating a strong name for your company, product or service. Once you have a great name you can move onto creating a strong logo to take things to the next level.