One of the very first steps, when you’re outlining a business plan, is to come up with a good name. Back in the pre-internet days, utilitarian names like “Joe’s Barber Shop” might have sufficed…but now, you’re competing with the online noise of all the other Joes in the world, and you have to put in a little more leg work to stand out. Follow these tips to knock your name out of the park.
Keep It Short and Sweet
This is arguably the most important factor in the “name” part of your business plan, for a number of reasons. First, because a short, punchy name is easy for customers to remember. Second, because whatever your business name is, it should also be your website domain name…and who wants to type a long-winded name into their browser bar? The sweet spot is 7 characters or less, but it’s not the end of the world if you can’t squeeze the name down quite that small.
Be Creative, Not Obscure
Particularly when a company is still small, it’s valuable to have some degree of recognizability from your name alone, so customers can have an immediate sense of what kind of business it is. For instance, you can riff off a word or phrase related to your industry and tweak it to be uniquely you.
Will customers be able to say your name on the first try, or will they have to squint while they try to figure out the phonetics? Having a name that’s intuitive to say and spell is especially crucial if you’re hoping to market via word of mouth. If your customers are talking about you but aren’t sure how to say your name, confusion will ensue and you might lose leads.
Have Design in Mind
Your name goes hand in hand with the overall aesthetic you want for your brand. Before you marry yourself to a name, think about how it will affect your design decisions. Will it make sense with the logo you want? Will it look good in the fonts you want? You want to present your customers with an attractive, unified experience.