Tips for Deciding on a Name for Your New Venture

Have you been dreaming of starting your own venture for many years, and now that the global pandemic and other factors have changed life for many of us, you’re finally ready to make your dream a reality? Or perhaps you’ve recently decided that you want to change your career direction? 

Either way, there are many tasks to complete and decisions to make as you plan and create an operation from scratch. 

One step you don’t want to rush or get wrong is choosing the name for your business. Getting the right title is one of the biggest decisions you’ll need to make, and there are many different factors to consider. Here are some tips to help you get this vital business ingredient right.

Research the Competition

First, research your competition so you know which names are already in use. Avoid choosing any name that’s too similar to another firm in your field, especially one already well-established in the marketplace. Business names distinguish one venture from another, so there’s no point in selecting a title that will lead to customer (and journalist, investor, or supplier) confusion. 

Conduct research to not only discover a list of names of the main businesses targeting your same customer base and selling similar wares, but also to learn which names and words have already been trademarked. It’s essential to understand how to trademark a name so you can protect the moniker you come up with and steer clear of infringing on others’ intellectual property. Also, check out which URLs have already been taken to better understand good and bad options when deciding on a business name. 

Get to Know Your Target Market

Learning as much as possible about your specific target market is also wise. If you’re clear about who you intend to sell to, you’ll have a better idea of the types of words and phrases that appeal to them. Learn about the problems these people need solving, and you might just come up with a catchy, meaningful, and memorable business name that will help you gain traction in the market much faster. 

Know What You’re Looking to Convey

Similarly, know what you’re looking to convey with the name you choose. What do you want the title to communicate to potential buyers and other stakeholders? What do you want people to imagine or feel when they hear it? What do you want them to remember? The best name reinforces the top features of your venture and indicates to people what you sell and why and how what you do provides benefits to shoppers or solves a problem for them. 

It pays to write a list of all your business's primary attributes, especially those you see as unique, that set your organization apart. Then, you can use these words and phrases to help you better understand what to convey with the name you end up choosing. 

Learn the Traits of an Effective Name

Another top tip for picking a venture name is to learn the traits of an effective moniker. There are multiple facets to consider. For instance, pick a name that’s simple and easy to read, spell, and pronounce. This makes people more likely to say and share the name, remember it, and see it in a favorable light. Plus, choose a title that’s a bit different, fresh, interesting, and memorable yet also focuses on using actual words or combinations of them. If you make up anything too far from the “norm,” people may misunderstand and find the business name unrelatable and confusing. 

Avoid Common Mistakes

There are some common naming mistakes you should try to avoid, too. One of these is making your business name too narrow. While you might have one specific target market or location in mind that you want to service right now, this may change over time. If you want to expand later, you need a name that isn’t too limited to one place or type of person. The same goes for basing a name on your own, especially if you want to sell the venture one day. Also, try to avoid a business name that revolves around one specific product or service; again, you may want to expand your offerings later. 

It’s also wise to avoid using words or phrases that may have bad connotations, whether in your current market or in potential others. People shop subconsciously a lot and often tend to avoid spending their money with organizations with a name that feels somehow “wrong” to them, even if they’re not sure why or don’t realize they’re doing this. For instance, you may want to avoid names related to things that sound gross, violent, outdated, unlucky, or give a negative impression of your company’s intentions or quality, etc. 

Take your time choosing a business name, as it’s one of the most vital components of creating and launching a new brand. Follow the tips above to help you get it right the first time.