Entrepreneurs have a split second to make an impression. Literally that quick and it’s gone. Usually that opportunity comes when you hear the question “So what’s the name of your business?” It might be a new brand or a marketing plan, but we want to know how did you make that tough decision.
Q: ENTREPRENEURS! HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH A BUSINESS NAME?
Use Your Cell Phone Number
I came up with 5290 Media Group because I wanted a name that wasn’t “branded” to a set industry in which case it would limit the type of clients that I get. A lot of people ask what the 5290 means and it’s really simple, it’s the last 4 numbers of my cell phone! My cell phone has been one of the things in my life that has been a constant between friends, and life changes and growths, my cell phone number as always been the same and been there through good and bad times. I wanted to take the number with me as I entered into entrepreneurship as I experience this new phase in my life.
Thanks to Alean Elston!
Keep It Consistent, Short, Meaningful, and Legal
(1) Make business name and domain name, and Twitter name equivalent. (2) Short! Under 10 characters. (3) Make it meaningful. Freally.com was nice and short and it’s not a concatenation of two dictionary words, but rather it stands for “It’s Free, Really” and (4) Check legalities! – some people get sued for mis-using names that are already trade-marked or existing
Thanks to Eric Bae!
Pick Up A History Book!
The name Stauer was actually derived from the ancient Greek sculptural hot spot Stauropolis. What’s really interesting is the connection between the two. Since Stauropolis is where the Romans made copies of all the great Greek sculptures, and Stauer recreates historical pieces, such as Abraham Lincoln’s watch, the two are closely related.
Thanks to Michael Bisceglia!
Ask a Question
My interior and furniture design business was named by my then 2-year-old son as he came out to the garage, my workshop, and saw me working on a table leg which was upside down. The table is designed to look like a walking bug, so on its back, it looked like a dead bug. My son came into my workshop and asked me what I was doing. I told him that I was building a table. He said, “Huh?” I told him again, it’s a table made to look like a bug. Again, “Huh?”. So after letting it marinate a bit, I realized the response I usually get when people first see my designs is “Huh?”- a question. Then after contemplating it for a few moments it’s quickly followed by “Huh!” – a confirmation.
Thanks to Brooke Coe!
Use Your Favorite Number & Character
‘9’ is my favorite lucky number, ‘99’ was the best year of my life. I met my husband, I started my career in PR, and I had the time of my life living in London. I also loved the character from “Get Smart” who was always so sassy, resourceful, diplomatic, smart and made her partner ‘Agent 86 – Maxwell Smart’ look great – which I thought was such a brilliant analogy for the way we work with our clients.
Thanks to Sharon & Danielle Swiecki!
Use a Life Experience
I have both a kidney and a pancreas transplant and so I have a second chance at life. The name Second Life has been taken as a Michigan corporation. So I translated it to Spanish: Segunda Vida, LLC, and Blessed Assurance: Success Despite the Odds is my book on LIVING life with diabetes rather than LIMITING life because of diabetes.
Thanks to Jacquie Lewis-Kemp!
Listen To Your Clients
I’m a professional image consultant and a client gave me the name. The name had been Image-Inations, and I had a fabulous logo that everyone loved. Only problem: how to pronounce it! One day a client exclaimed excitedly, “You’ve hit the nail on the head about everything from head to toe! You’re the Image Architect.” I changed the name immediately and tweaked the image by adding an architect’s “compass” as part of the logo.
Thanks to Sandy Dumont
To come up with my business name, I asked my kids at the breakfast table! I explained that the business was going to be teaching people how to build their online presence themselves. My 12 year old daughter said – how about presents – like little gifts – for the logo? I thought that was sweet, the play on words. Then my other daughter said how about My Business Presence – since that implies that they are in control of it. So we decided on that, and my logo has a row of presents, each with a different gift tag representing the different types of business presence -community presence, online presence, professional presence, etc.
Thanks to Karen Clark!
Relax and Think It Over
When I was coming up with the name Fluccs I was actually looking for a brand only for our new Cloud Computing service and as such I was giving thought to what type of service is it and what does it represent? The main part of this was that a Cloud service has to be able to scale up and down on demand in order to meet the changing needs of a client. I thought where can I relax and think about this? So I decided Groove Train on the banks of the Brisbane River would be an ideal spot. I had lunch and sat there looking out over the river and seeing the clouds moving across the sky and the flow of water in river got me thinking about these changing needs which in turn led to the line of thought of it being a state of flux. Flux.com.au was already taken so I thought of other variations and half way through my second bottle of Red up popped Fluccs.
Thanks to Angus Thomas!
Use Something You’re Scared Of
My son was 15 when he conceived the idea to make a film. A pretty amazing idea for a kid with autism whom I was told might never walk or talk. In 2006, Taylor and I created a film, “Normal People Scare Me” which was produced by Joey Travolta. Taylor took the idea for the title from a T-shirt he saw online for sale. Whenever I used my business credit card, or cash a check made payable to “Normal People Scare Me” if they’re seeing the words, nine times out of ten, I’ve made a new contact after they say “Oh, Normal People Scare Me too! What is it that you do?” I smile on the way to and while in the bank!
It Has To Go Together Like Peas and Carrots
I have 2 companies with unique names, and a logo to match. Choosing the name and final logo was a detailed process for both. I had to make sure the logo completely represented the feel for who I am and what my company represents. Each company and its logo go together like peas and carrots. My other company is Cactus & Ivy.
Thanks to Lisa Rodgers!
Choose Something Unique Exciting & Fun
When we first started Assemblo, we wanted to create a brand that was unique, exciting and fun.
With Assemblo, we wanted to create a brand that had a personality of its own. Something that would stand up in a corporate environment, over social media, and eventually even as a plushie toy. We had a Google Doc where we stored a whole slew of different name ideas. There was a very consistent steam punk, 1950’s futurist sci-fi theme coming through, but nothing really amazing. All of a sudden Assemblo materialized with his catch phrase “Assemblo Loves You” (robotic love is truly the best kind!) and proceeded to destroy every other name on the list!”
Thanks to Steve de Niese!
Build It & the Name Will Come
As an emergency medical professional, my career took an odd turn the week my book, America’s Dumbest Doctors” hit the bookstores. Suddenly I found myself pulled sideways into a world where professional groups invited me to come to speak about my research. When one radio talk show host introducing me as, “The man who dares to expose medical maniacs,” I realized it was time to build a business around my books. So we started our business and incorporated in California: “Medical Maniacs, Inc.”
Thanks to Patrick McDonald!
Make It Different & Weirder
Our company is called mHITs (pronounced Em-HITs). We have some really interesting pronunciations of this let me tell you!). It was based on an acronym describing the type of mobile payment technology our company deals with: Mobile Handset Initiated Transactions. Had we named out company something boring and obvious like the completely unimaginative “mpay” or something, then apart from needing to distinguish OUR brand from all the other “mpay” brands out there using the same unimaginative name, picking something as obscure as possible like mHITs means we stand out!
Thanks to Harold Dimpel!
Choose Something That Represents You
Leslie Loves Veggies is a review and give-a-way blog I started 2 years ago. I’ve been a vegetarian for 22 years! I wondered what would be a great name that represents ‘me’. Leslie… loves… Her God, Her Hubby, her kids? Hmmm.. Leslie Loves Veggies!!!! It was instantaneous!
Thanks to Leslie Mayorga!
Follow Your Instincts
I was fortunate in having only 36 hours to settle on a name and incorporate, so I couldn’t over-think it. My instincts said: just be you. I chose Undefined Creative. It spoke volumes about who I am and about my approach to design, to client relationships, to life philosophy – but it was a gamble for operating within an industry that exists to establish and promote definitions. The name raises eyebrows and questions; it invites dialogue and allows me to tell a personal story. It fosters an understanding between me, my firm and my clients.
Thanks to Maria Rapetskaya!