Today’s guest post is written by Zeke Camusio of The Outsourcing Company. This time around Zeke gives us some tips to think about and consider when naming your consulting business or helping a client come up with a name for their business. Many of our readers at this blog have asked us for more and more information on naming so here you go – enjoy! >> Read Zeke’s full bio here
Sometimes the name comes before the idea because witty names are good business ideas in themselves. One would imagine that’s what happened with Hooters – the popular restaurant chain with the ultimate double-entendre name. However it is more common to have a great idea and then having to figure a name for it. How can you come up with the best name for your consulting business?
There are trends that do emerge in this area. For example, in the late 1990s we had the greco-latin root names for drugs and businesses. Take “Allegra” or “Viagra”. Acronyms have been popular before that, such as with IBM (International Business Machines); and lately there is a trend toward neologisms: Twitter, Yahoo.
A name has a lot to do with the concept behind your business. So you should start with determining where your idea falls within certain categories. The following guide can help you do just that:
1) Is your business:
- In industry or manufacturing
- In corporate services (services that companies, not individuals will buy)
- In retail services (services that will be purchased by individuals)
- In distribution or commercialization (where you don’t make what you sell but purchase and resell)
2) If you answered
- (a) then go to number 5; if you answered (b) then go to number 4; go to number 3 if you answered (c) or (d).
3) In both retail services and distribution, you need an evocative name that is also easy to remember and differentiate amongst many choices. If it is a service you are selling, you can go with a catchy word that evokes just what you do. For example, if you sell phone service to the general public, some evocative and witty names could be formed such as: talk2U; RingMeUp; CallCast. With products that are sold retail or distribution, an evocative name is also the best choice.
4) Corporate services are expected to be effective, cost competitive and reliable. These are the three attributes that keep corporations happy about a product or service. Catchy names can work, but you are usually better served by finding a name that evokes reliability and knowledge. For example, if you were in the computer network business, you might go with Reliable Networks; Intellinetworks; Business Data Guards and such. These names tell the client exactly what you are about and evoke knowledge on the subject, professionalism and reliability.
5) Manufacturing is a complex activity that entails many disciplines being put together to bring about a tangible product. The best in this case is to stick with a name that simply describes the product or the fact that the business is in industry. For example Crown Soap; Reliant Industries; Young Refining; Talbot Electronics.
There are other cases to look at, but the rules about what to communicate through a name apply the same in every case. Just as with a movie title, the target audience is what drives the name, and you should expect your name to become another marketing tool in your box.