How to choose a winning brand name

Much like naming your baby, choosing a name for your company is daunting. The wrong brand name can seriously impact on its success. (Again, just as with naming babies – people who named their children Kingmessiah or Mattel, we’re looking at you!)

Plus, we exist in a world of white noise. With a 24/7 information overload, finding a catchy, standout brand name that cuts through is more crucial than ever.

But never fear – there are some tips and tricks you can use to help you make this seemingly impossible decision. And feel good about it.

Who is your customer?

Middle-aged country-dwellers with disposable income on their hands? Exhausted parents willing to throw money at their little ones’ every want and need? Tattooed millennials sick of spending all their cash on avocado toast?

Everything loops back to your customer. It’s easy for new companies and start-ups to fall into the trap of creating a brand name that excites them. But actually, it needs to excite the people who will buy your product or service.

Once, and only once you’ve created your customer profile, can you come up with a name that will hit the mark.

Your brand name doesn’t have to directly relate to your product. Apple is not a fruit vendor. Safari is not a package-holiday provider. Also, think about the qualities and values your brand represents, rather than the product it sells.

Remember, keep it short and sweet. A brand name that is concise and easy to say is going to be more memorable. And memorable is essential; in fact, it might be the most important quality.

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Brainstorm your heart out

So you’ve got a detailed customer profile in front of you. Congrats! The next step is to hunker down, get your whiteboard out (or digital equivalent) and get brainstorming.

Ideally, you want to be as free and creative as possible. It’s always easier to reign ideas back in, so go all out and don’t hold back! The more options you have available, the more choice you have for your shortlist, which you can go back over and refine as needed.

If you have a team to bounce ideas off, great. Flying solo? No problem. You know that one friend you have who gives brutally honest life advice? Once you’ve got your list, send it to them for some candid feedback.

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Trademark it – pronto

So you’ve got it – the perfect brand name! Now you can relax. Actually, not too much. You now need to check it’s not used by anyone else in a similar sector (you don’t want to be sued!), and then you need to trademark it.

Trademarking your name protects not only your brand, but also your investment. Confusion can easily arise if another business trades under yours – or even a similar – trademark. You could theoretically lose out on sales.

However, there are specific situations where this may not be the best course of action; if you’re unsure, you should seek professional advice. In fact, we could be those very professionals, thanks to our trusted partner in copyright law.

Need trademark advice, or help choosing a name that works for your brand? Let’s talk!

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