Naming Your Business? 5 Things to Think About

In any major U.S. city, you can’t go more than a couple of blocks without seeing a Starbucks. The name is so ingrained in our minds that—whether you’re a fan of the coffee or not—you know exactly what that Starbucks name stands for. When you start a business, it’s crucial to choose a memorable name that communicates what your business does.

You never know where a good name will come from: The founders of Starbucks chose the name of a minor character in Herman Melville’s novel Moby-Dick to emphasize their Seattle roots. Want a great name? Try these tips:

• Your name should convey your expertise as well as the value and uniqueness of your product or service.

Don’t let your name limit your future. For example, putting your city’s name in your business name will complicate future expansion.

• Remember, looks matter. How will your business name look in a logo, on signage and in your marketing materials?

• Choose four or five possibilities and do a trademark search. Then conduct a casual focus group by asking others what connotations the name evokes.

• The advisory company Big Picture Coaching says it’s important to keep your name simple. And don’t forget to create a great tagline to go with your company name.

A business name is a crucial part of the puzzle—and so is the business plan. Check out 6 tips to outline one that’s top-notch.


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