Five Steps to Picking a Name for your Business by Casey Handwerger

Updated: Oct 28, 2020

You’ve got a great new business idea and you’re ready to hit the ground running. One of the first things you’ll need to do is pick a name for your new business. Your business’s name will serve as the starting point for your entire brand so choosing a name cannot be taken lightly. It may seem like a daunting task, but by following the steps below you are sure to land on the perfect name.

1. Block out a large amount of time.

You can’t rush this process. You’ll need time to brainstorm ideas, narrow down your options, sleep on it and run your name by others to get a second opinion. Suffice to say, this is an important process, and you probably won’t come up with the perfect name in ten minutes so be prepared to spend a bit of time on naming your business.

2. Have a good brainstorming session.

Sit down and write every possible name you can come up with. If you have close friends or family that can brainstorm with you, that’s even better. You want to come out of the session with a long list of names so don’t be afraid to write down some absurd things. Sometimes the weirdest idea can lead you to the best names.

3. Refine your list.

Now is the time you can be critical. Go through the list and cross off anything that won’t work. There are lots of small details to consider with naming your business, like keeping it short and simple and picking something that is easy to pronounce. This article has a lot of great tips to think about. During this step you’ll want to end up with under ten options. It may also be a good idea to check if the domain names are available as you go through your list, and to ensure there isn’t a trademark already associated with each name.

4. Conduct a “focus group”.

Once you have a short list of possible names run your ideas by some friends or prospective customers to get their opinions. They might notice something about your name that you didn’t.

5. Make your final decision.

Sleep on your short list of options and then make your final decision. Once you have your name act quickly to get the domain name and trademark. Then breathe a sigh of relief because you are officially ready to start branding your new business.

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