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What's in a (company) name?

what are word for?
what are word for? (Photo credit: Darwin Bell)

Are you about to launch a new business?

Have you done the tricky bit of deciding what name to give your company?

Well my first piece of advice is not to automatically go for the one your Mum suggested...there ARE some criteria you need to consider.  Namely:

simple to say and spell
difficult to mispronounce
with an available website domain name 
relevant and in step with your anticipated company brand
not linked with anything negative

There are a number of ways to arrive at a suitable company name:

You might make a list of key words that describe firstly what you are offering and  secondly the core values of your business.  This was quite likely the method used to come up with "Vision Express"

Why not use words that describe the experience you are offering your customer.  These are self explanatory and intuitive - think about "Lush" of yummy bath bombs, soaps and shampoo fame.  Think about "Kindle" sparking the desire to read more...

How about  deliberately choosing words that break the mould of conventional company names.  For example "Apple" does not sound like a techie name and therefore stands out from the crowd.

Make up a word - it worked for Kodak, it works for Google...

Perhaps combine two words together to make what is called a "portmanteau" word, this is how we get the Chunnel - (Channel Tunnel), Pictionary (Picture and Dictionary) Webinar (Web and Seminar)  Far be it for me to encourage you,  but I can't help thinking that a couple of bottles of red wine might speed up this particular naming process!

You could name the company after yourself but this takes longer to catch on as there is no automatic connection with your business offering.  However, this did not stop Marks & Spencer or Saatchi and Saatchi so what do I know?

Of course if you want to be a limited company you will also need to check the availability at Companies House and don't forget that you may also want to trademark it so make sure this would be possible

Have you seen any company names that stuck in your mind.  I'd love to hear and share!

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