What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”
So goes the eternally popular line from Shakespeare in his play Romeo and Juliet. This statement seemed to hold true in those days. Ironically, many would disagree with Shakespeare today, for a name means and defines everything. Even “a girl who had no name”, chose to become “Arya Stark of Winterfell” in the end. (Surely, GOT fans would agree with this!)
The importance of a name
The folly with entrepreneurs today is that they can get caught up in all the jargon and technicalities when starting a business. In doing this they tend to overlook the very identity and existence of their business--its name. A major part of your brainstorming efforts should go in this very exercise. The final business name should not only resonate with your ideas but should also connect with the customers. This is because the business name not only defines your business but also speaks about your personality.
As Confucius has rightly quoted, “the beginning of wisdom is to call things by their right names”. Mentioned below are few tacks you can use when determining the name of your venture.
1. Have a ring to it
The name you choose for your business should unarguably resonate with your business idea. But what is more important is that the name should have a sugary ring to it. It should sound pleasing to the ears and establish a positive connection with the users.
Hence, keep in mind the dual qualities that your name needs to reflect. It should be euphonious and at the same time, resonate with the mission and vision of the business.
2. Ensure that it is easy to spell and pronounce
It is crucial that the name you choose for your business is easy to spell and pronounce. This strategy has proven to be of success to many famous brands. The secret here is that adherence to this mantra guarantees popularity amongst the masses. This makes the brand user-friendly and makes it easier for people to refer your brand and products to others.
A brand name like Tiffany & Co. or Amazon are both easy and spell to pronounce as compared to brand names like Fage (pronounced “fah-yay”) or Bvlgari (pronounced “bull-guh-ree”).
3. Use an online name generator
If you have a problem, the Internet has a possible solution. When you’re stuck and can’t think of a name that is just right, then try a brainstorm session with online name generators. They are usually free and may give you ideas or hints you would’ve never thought of before.
All you have to do is feed the keywords that you wish to be attached with your business name. And voila! the online platform gives us a decent assortment of business names to choose from. Go ahead and pick the one that defines the soul and spirit of your business.
Check out Webnames' Name Wizard here.
4. Ensure your name doesn’t have an offensive meaning in a different language
Sometimes, many English words that we use have a different connotation in some other language, even though they may be spelled the same in both languages. This is either because they come from the same source language or because the word from one language may have been ‘loaned’ by the other language. However, these words in the English language may mean something entirely different in another language.
If the business name you have chosen turns out to be offensive or prohibited in some other language, then it might become one of the biggest hindrances when you plan to expand your business to other geographies. You may be prohibited from doing business in certain parts of the world. So, always think long term.
5. Avoid any infringement of trademark or copyright
Another area of focus is that the business name should not be similar or comparable to an already existing brand name in any manner. These copyrights or trademarks infringement might cost you millions and dearly in terms of time, energy and efforts. The legal battles are lengthy and frustrating and more often than not, crush the smaller businesses entirely.
A South Korean fried chicken restaurant named Louis Vuiton Dak recently lost a trademark battle with designer Louis Vuitton. The court ruled in the designer's favor as the restaurant's logo and packaging closely mirrored the designer's iconic imagery along with being similar in names. The restaurant was penalized a hefty amount on account of non-compliance and infringement charges.
6. Register your name on a new domain extension
The name you choose for your business will have to take the form of a domain name for your website. Often businesses make the mistake of changing the way a word is spelled or adding additional numbers to get the domain name that they want. However, with the availability of new domain extensions such as .TECH, .STORE, .SITE, .SPACE, .ONLINE, .PRESS, .WEBSITE, .FUN, etc., you can get the domain name of your choice on a contextual and brandable domain extension. Not only does it make your brand stand out in a sea of competitors, but it also makes it look relevant and credible.
For example, look at these two domain names and guess which one looks credible and which one resembles a spam link
You have your answer.
7. Ask for feedback
More often than not, we underutilize the power of constructive feedback from our closed ones. Asking the opinions of people close to you on what suits and defines your business best may turn out to be the best idea.
These people might be able to bring in fresher perspectives. You might, in fact, end up with a better business name than what was initially finalized for the business. After all, communication is the key to any successful business.
All in all, the Shakespearean view of “What’s in a name?” holds no good in this generation of millennials. In fact in today’s world, “it’s all in the name”! So, go ahead with your idea and get creative with the name. But be sure to find it on a reliable domain name that resonates with your ideas and at the same time is easy to remember and resonates with your customers.
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This blog was written for Webnames Blog by Alisha Shibli, a Content Marketing Specialist at Radix, the registry operator behind great new domain extensions like .store, .online, .tech, .press and others.