When starting a business, choosing the right name can be a critical factor in determining the success of the brand. The following are seven key criteria as discussed in the book The Brand Gap by Marty Neumeier, that should be considered when selecting a business name.
A good business name should be distinctive and stand out from competitors, particularly those in the same industry. It should also be easily distinguishable from ordinary speech and text. The best brand names have a “presence” that feels like a proper noun.
Short and memorable names are more likely to be easily recalled by customers. A shorter name is also less likely to be reduced to a nickname or acronym. A multi-word name, on the other hand, may be shortened to non-communicating initials, losing its impact and meaning.
The name should be appropriate for the business purpose and reflect the core values or offerings of the brand. If the name could apply to any other business, it may not be the best fit. A name that is relevant and meaningful to the brand can help to establish a strong identity in the market.
Easy spelling and pronunciation:
A good business name should be easy to spell and pronounce. If it’s difficult to spell or requires a spelling test, it may be hard for customers to remember or search for online. Similarly, if it’s challenging to pronounce, it may make people feel ignorant or embarrassed to use it.
A likable name is one that is enjoyable to say and use. A name that’s pleasing to the ear can create positive associations with the brand, helping to establish emotional connections with customers. Intellectual stimulation or a good “mouth feel” can help to make a name more likable.
A good business name should be extendable, allowing for visual interpretations and creative executions. It should suggest a wide range of possibilities for brand play and be versatile enough to be used in a variety of contexts. A name that can be adapted in various ways can help to create a strong brand identity.
Finally, the name should be protectable through trademarking and available for web use. Trademarking the name can help to protect the brand from infringement, and having a domain name available for web use is essential for creating an online presence. A name that is protectable can help to ensure the longevity of the brand.
In summary, choosing a business name involves considering several factors. The name should be distinctive, brief, appropriate, easy to spell and pronounce, likable, extendable, and protectable. By keeping these criteria in mind, businesses can choose a name that accurately reflects their brand identity, helps them stand out in the market, and builds a strong brand image for years to come.