What’s in a name?

Coming up with a name for a new business can be nerve-racking, especially if it’s your first business, and understandably, it’s the start of a new brand. Your legacy, if you may.
I would like to share a few notes on branding before we proceed.
A logo, packaging, font type, and personality represent a brand, but don’t forget customer service; your product or service price point and quality also represent the brand, even though these elements are more intangible.

A brand is emotional, visual, and human. It’s the experience you create for your customers.
Simply put, branding is the art of differentiation.
As someone privileged to work with and grow a few SMEs, I have enjoyed helping some of them create their business names.
See below some tips that I have used over the years in helping with this delicate process.

Get a pen and paper. Don’t attempt to do this mentally. Writing stuff down physically always has a way of making things more straightforward and less daunting. Plus, it could be fun.
The first step is to identify what your business does in clear terms. Don’t be vague, and don’t use a generic industry overview. You need to be very concise and specific in outlining this for your business and brand.
See below for some steps to help with this process. In outlining this process, I will use a food business as an example in this exercise.
List out a few words that come to mind when talking about your product or service. E.g., Bites, Yummy, Fine Dining, Sumptuous Meals, Quick Delivery, etc.

Read also: Young Business Lawyer Spotlight

List out some words you’d like your product or service to be associated with. E.g., Premium, Luxury, Family Brand, Affordable, etc.
List out a few words that have some sort of meaning to you. Tips: It could be an origin. (This step is optional)
Keep shortlisting those words until you have a top 2 or 3 in each category
Have a mini focus group or conduct an internal poll to determine the public’s reception

Pick a brand name!
Some business name options for “the food business” can be “Bites by Kelly,”- An on-the-go catering & food truck service.
There are some essential factors to note during this process:
It’s just a name! It only becomes a brand when you create an experience for your customers. Think of all your loved and popular brands- do all their brand names have psychic meanings?

Think of only concise names. In addition, you also have to get a domain name & social media handles. Lengthy names are always challenging to navigate.

In conclusion, I am going to share two different schools of thought when coming up with a brand name:
School of thought 1: Advises to have a bit of your service or what you incorporate in a brand name, e.g., Prism Communications, Timeless Beauty Salon, so you don’t leave your customers guessing what the brand does, and it helps in driving more awareness for your brand.

School of thought 2: They believe it doesn’t matter because your customer service, price point, and product/service quality are more important in driving awareness and conversion for your brand.
What do you think? Share your thoughts, and don’t forget to share this article with your emerging entrepreneur circle.


With over ten years as a certified Marketing and Communications Professional and certified Digital Marketing Professional, Kelly has a career span that had her actively building, managing, marketing, and growing brands with specializations in communication & marketing strategy, digital marketing, public relations, brand strategy and execution, content marketing, and holistic 360 brand management.

Kelly has had the opportunity to deliver on measurable brand objectives with over 12 brands in her portfolio, varying from the insurance, finance, beauty & skincare, FMCG, and the healthcare industry throughout her career. Over time, the intense marketing and communication skills have allowed her to become skilled at delivering fundamental business marketing objectives & ROI.

With an Associate membership with the Chartered Institute of Marketing, UK (CIM), an Executive membership with the Nigerian Institute of Public relations (NIPR) and Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigerian (APCON), being certified by the Digital Marketing Institute of Ireland (DMI), Kelly is professionally licensed and well versed in the marketing and communications industry.
She is also an author of the e-book, The World That Stood Still, and the Corporate Persona Series creator.
When Kelly is not doing all of these, she loves trying out new restaurants, traveling, writing, and generally having a good time.

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