In the words of William Shakespeare, “what’s in a name?” In the world of business, EVERYTHING! “No, I have not heard of it.” & “No, I don’t prefer this name.” are common sentences amid customers who need to determine if they want to purchase from a new brand or not.
Hence, your company name represents a significant role in a brand’s growth and understanding, meaning it can simply make or break a company.
It’s astounding how important a name can be. For each company whose name becomes an entrepreneurial benchmark – Apple, Uber, Google, etc. – there are many whose names don’t accurately match the brand, and the company suffers because of it. We understand the absolute power a brand can have, and when a name is the reputation of the brand, getting it right is utterly crucial.
In this article, we will provide certain things to consider while choosing a brand name. However, before delving into the answer of ‘how’, let’s first understand ‘why.’
Why A Company’s Name Matters
It’s The First Thing Customers See
First impressions control entire connections, so creating a robust impression instantly is a crucial key to branding success. The primary thing a customer associates a brand with is the name, so it has to carry the right message; it needs to wow the audience. Consider it as a first handshake; it states a lot about the brand and creates a powerful impact.
In the words of Margot Bushnaq, the Founder & CEO of Brand Bucket, “A catchy unusual name can help the customer remember you, and we all attempt to be memorable and retain the customer. The less and easier it is to spell the better.”
An excellent name can develop a long-lasting association between a company and its customers; though, on the other hand, it can destroy otherwise prominent relationships if not chosen appropriately.
It Sums Up Everything A Company Is About
Quite a few elements go into the ideal name, so just thinking of a company name off the top of your head is not precisely the most appropriate strategy for a brand. It requires a variety of heartfelt thoughts while building a company as a leader in an industry. “I recollect we studied about it for weeks and went by tons of choices. Eventually, my business associate Adam Topping came up with the name CustomOnIt, which superbly sums up everything our company was proceeding to do — assist people to place their logo on a variety of promotional products,” described Co-owner Paul Serra.
Mostly, it’s an amazingly short summary of everything the company is about. Think of a few of the biggest names in the world – let’s revisit Apple. Precise values and beliefs are associated with the name, and their brand is set because of it. You think of more than only their products; you think of Steve Jobs, sophisticated design, and the like.
It’s Your Unique Take On An Industry
There are several companies in any given industry. Even newer industries instantly obtain traction and draw entrepreneurs, which indicates that a lot of companies offer similar services, hence customers are spoiled for choice.
What makes consumers pick one company over another? The persona of a company; as Simon Sinek may put it, their “Why?” Branding sells, and the name imprinted on a brand does most of the footwork.
To state it simply, it’s more than only a name; it’s the status of a whole brand. It needs time and consideration, and when managed properly, it will transform business forever.
Also Read – The Importance of Video For Branding
How To Choose An Ideal Brand Name
Selecting a casual brand name often leads to snap judgements and potential values and features attached to it by customers. For instance, what do you consider are the values and features of a brand named ‘Horse’ and trading in real estate sector? There can be a plethora of variations and assumptions that can be made, and most of the time, this isn’t good for your brand.
There are no hard and fast rules which businesses follow to pick a brand name, but there sure are a few hacks, which are listed below.
Your Present Matters
When it comes to the world of business, the past is not a history, the future is not a mystery, but the present certainly is a gift.
Know who you’ll be attending to, their ideas and opinions, and select a brand name accordingly. You don’t have to worry much about your prospective customers as your image then will depend mostly on your current image and connections.
Communication Is Key
The company makes a product while the customers create the brand. It’s the ability of communication which forms a brand. Any communication, whether B2C, B2B, C2C, or C2B, which links to the brand includes its brand name.
A study revealed that if consumers observe that the brand name is simple and a good fit, they’ll recognise it better and also like it more. The brand receives a benefit of word of mouth marketing.
Nevertheless, brands with a long or difficult name also have their perks. They are sometimes thought as experienced and great players of the game.
Only make sure that communication works right. For example, Cadabra had to replace their brand name to Amazon as the name was usually misheard as Cadaver (which indicated a corpse).
Associations Matter, Not The Meaning
In the case of brands, it’s the company who makes the definition of the brand name by the products, marketing actions, and associations. Nike, which seems very cool, is truly the Greek goddess of victory.
Moreover, it is not necessary to choose actual words. Just create new words which have phonetic symbolism that defines the brand philosophy/product most effectively. These new words work as an empty slate on which the brand can address meaning.
Although what about scenarios wherein the name has a pre-existing meaning? Till the moment that the word doesn’t have any significant association with anything; it works an empty slate. However, if it has some connection, it is prudent to review it before utilising it.
Phonetic Symbolism in Brand Names
Various sounds have various psychological results. Sound is something you should have in mind as it performs a vital role in the development of the impression of a brand.
Phonetic symbolism relates to the idea that the sounds of words carry meaning which can be from their semiotic connotation.
Few views of the relevance of phonetic symbolism in brand names –
- Researches explain that names in which phonetic symbolism endorses the product category (e.g., Frosh for fresh fruits) are favoured over brand names without such complementarity (Frish for fresh fruits)
- Studies have revealed that distinct vowel sounds send perceptions compared to size, taste, and attractiveness. Vowels such as ‘A’ &’ O’ tend to sound louder than the vowels like ‘E’, ‘I’ while ‘U’ sounds tastier.
- There is a front/back difference for distinguishing vowels, which relates to the highest point of the tongue when saying a sound. For instance, the most top position of the tongue is more to the front of the mouth for bee than for bin, and more to the back for boot than for bin.
- Front vowels carry features like shorter, faster, sharper, whereas back vowels conveyed features like longer, slower, heavier. Therefore, it is recommended to utilise words with front vowels if you desire to place yourself as a niche brand and back vowels for a parent brand.
It is recommended not to sound similar to words such as eew, puke, pee, etc. which have adverse associations. For example, a business with a name ‘Pook’ will be less favoured than a company named ‘Kook’.
Again, there is no evidence that if you connote your product classification in your name, there are possibilities that you will not be capable of expanding your profile. For example, the Indian Tobacco Company (ITC) besides marketing 81% of entire cigarettes in India, also has its establishment in Food, lifestyle apparel, stationary, hotels, and additional sectors. Furthermore, Dunkin’ Donuts is more popular in India for their burgers than their doughnuts.
If you are going to begin as a niche brand, it may benefit your brand if you connote the category in your brand name as the customers will immediately link you to that niche.
Several marketers observe that a brand name should match the product category or the philosophy of the brand for more reliable positioning strategies.
Brand names that match a philosophy rather than the product category might not instantly describe what they sell. However, most customers would get involved with the brand is attempting to discover out what the name stands for. It undoubtedly gives the workers a chance to talk about their brand’s conception and therefore supports the brand in public associations.
Eg. – Meru, Metro, Entrepreneur etc.
Though Product reflection in the brand name encourages customers to connect the brand to that particular niche and they get the idea of the services offered by that brand. Eg. – Zomato, Big Basket, Gourmet, etc.
In conclusion, creating a brand name is the first step in building your brand identity. It helps customers to decide exactly what they should think, and feel when they see your company or hear about it from an external source. Hence, you should be very careful and put in a lot of through while choosing a brand name. After all, everything is in the name!
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