The Happy Start-Up: Choosing A Business Name
One of the hardest things when starting a business is choosing a name. It always feels like all the best ones are taken and even if you do find one with the domain name available then you discover the Twitter handle you want has already been taken. Usually by someone who has only tweeted once, way back in 2010. It feels so unfair!
Despite all the usual problems I was able to painlessly decide on a name for my new business! Today I’ll show you my process then I’ll share some tips that you can use so you can choose a business name with less stress in the future.
How I named my new business
I knew the name needed to be strong, relatively short, and memorable so I brainstormed a few words that might work. As I’d visited the charity Aspire Rwanda just a few days before and the inspirational Peace Ruzage (Aspire’s founder) made such an impact on me, the words Peace and Piece made the list.
As soon as I saw Piece written down I knew it was “the one”. I liked the symbolism of it and how it implies the pieces of jewellery we’ll be selling and the women piecing their lives back together after the genocide.
The Free Online Dictionary defines Piece as:
“a thing considered as a unit or an element of a larger thing, quantity, or class; a portion: e.g a piece of string”
As the business would be built on collaborating with others (working together as a unit) and towards a larger thing (a shared purpose to help women rise above poverty), the word seemed like a great fit.
Of course a quick google search showed Piece was already taken by a company making luggage.
I was set on the name by then, it was the only thing that felt right so instead of getting stressed, I considered my options. I brainstormed ideas such as Piece Jewellery and Piece Accessories but I didn’t want the name to limit where the brand could go in the future.
By now I was 100% set on Piece needing to be in the name so I looked at other ways I could incorporate it.
My next step was to think about what feelings I wanted the customers to feel when they wore the jewellery or brought our accessories into their homes.
Simple and very, very me! I wanted the first collection to be bold and colourful and ‘happy’ fit really well with that.
I searched to see if Happy Piece was available and the domain was free! So www.happypiece.com was born.
Incidentally, the Twitter name was already taken so I settled for @happypieceHQ . I debated adding UK and CO but neither was right for various reasons.
So there it is. The whole naming process took less than five days.
- Naming a business doesn’t need to be hard. Go with your gut, you will know when you find the right name.
- Dream big. Where might you take the business in the future? Beware of limiting yourself to a name that can’t cross into other areas later on. A problem I had with my consulting business, Noisette Marketing.
- When you find a name you like, think on it for while before sharing it with the world. This gives you a chance to test it out on family first. Use the new name in conversation to see if it feels, sounds and looks right when written down.
- Check domains, trademarks, search engines and social media sites to see if your name has been taken. Some are more important than others. If your perfect social media username is in use, you can get inventive. use common sense as to whether this is an option for you. If the other brand offering is very similar, steer clear. If it is too out there, also steer clear incase their business potentially damages your brand name.
- If you get really stuck, use a naming service. Companies like Aeolidia or most freelance copywriters can help you choose a name. Copywriters know the business of words. You can work with them to find the perfect name to express your new business or product.