Message from the President & CEO

“12 Tips For Naming Your Startup Business and learn.” 

What’s in a name?  This is an interesting and very important question when it comes to naming your business.  

Over my years in the business world, I have come across thousands of different business names for small to median size companies.  Some good, some not so good.  It has been my experience that most businesses do not have tens of thousands of dollars for brand building.  Therefore, choosing the right name for your business can be worth tens of thousands of dollars!

Below is an excellent article, by Richard Harroch, that talks about naming your business. This month I will share his first four of the twelve tips.

Finding the right name for your startup can have a significant impact on your success. The wrong name can do worse than fail to connect with customers; it can also result in insurmountable business and legal hurdles. In contrast, a clear, powerful name can be extremely helpful in your marketing and branding efforts.

Here are 12 helpful suggestions on how to come up with a winning name for your business:

1. Avoid hard-to-spell names.You don’t want potential customers getting confused about how to find your business online. (I never understood why “Flickr” was pushed as the name for the photo-sharing site.) You want to avoid having to continually correct the misspelled version of your name. Keep it simple. 

2. Don’t pick a name that could be limiting as your business grows.Picking too narrow of a name may cause you problems down the road. Imagine if Jeff Bezos had picked the name “OnlineBooks” instead of “Amazon.” So avoid names like “Wedding Dresses of San Francisco” or “LugNuts Unlimited.” You don’t want to limit your business to a particular product or a specific city.  

3. Conduct a thorough Internet search.Once you have determined a name you like, do a web search on the name. More often than not, you will find that someone else is already using that business name. While that won’t be a total showstopper, it should give you pause. 

4. Get the .com domain name.My strong preference is that you secure the “.com” domain name for your business rather than alternatives such as .net, .org, .biz, or other possible domain extensions. Customers tend to associate a .com name with a more established business. Undoubtedly, someone will already own your desired .com name, but many domain owners are willing to sell their name for the right price.Think of acquiring the .com name you want as a business investment. You can check on the availability of a domain name on sites such as GoDaddy.com or NetworkSolutions.com, and if the domain name is taken, you can often track down the owner of the domain name and see if they are willing to sell it by using the “Whois” tool at GoDaddy or Network Solutions.  Also make sure to grab your desired business name on popular social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

To be continued next month.

Lee Bel
lPresident and CEO