Finding the perfect name for your business can be agonizing. Your name carries the burden of describing what you do, what makes you unique and who should hire you–all in a few words.
No wonder it drives us nuts! Needless to say, it’s worth putting some thought into your business name.
Get Your Creative Juices Flowing
Before we get down to the nitty gritty of power naming, you need to determine exactly what you want your name to accomplish by answering these questions:
- Who is the ideal client I want to attract?
- What words do I want to associate with my business?
- Which of these words will be attractive to those ideal clients?
Once you’ve answered these questions, start brainstorming. Take out a piece of paper and write down as many words as you can. Keep writing until you’ve filled at least an entire page.
Then start combining words and trying out different phrases until you have at least five good names. Use the following tips and tools to help.
#1 – Keep it short and simple.
Your name should be short and easy to understand, no more than three words. It should describe what you do so that couples get it within seconds.
I know that companies like eBay, Google and Flickr make a fortune by inventing a catchy name, but they also had the budget to advertise and make sure that branding was everywhere. I’m guessing that you don’t have that luxury.
Your best bet is a name that’s functional and descriptive. Be sure to say what you do.
If you’re a photographer, include the word photography or photo. If you’re a DJ or planner, put it in your name.
Don’t make couples work to figure out what you do. If you don’t catch their attention in 7.5 seconds, you’ll lose them.
#2 – Make it memorable.
A great name is catchy. It’s easy to remember, easy to say, easy to spell and easy to write.
One of the biggest mistakes wedding professionals make in naming their businesses is using generic words (resulting in dozens of “Unique Events” companies that are anything but) and trying to mimic creativity by misspelling common words. (Think Foto and DJz.)
Avoid looking and sounding just like the competition: Sounds Entertainment, Elegant Events, Unique Photography.
Experiment with alliteration, rhythm and rhyme. Examples of this include Coca-Cola, Dunkin’ Donuts, Book More Brides…*wink*
#3 – Choose a Name That Attracts Your Ideal Clients.
It’s important that you like your name, but it’s even more important that it attracts the type of clients you want to work with. Don’t get so attached to your name that you pick something that repels them.
For instance, if you’re a band who wants to work high-end, elegant weddings and your name is Doctor Mud, well, it doesn’t exactly attract the right customers.
Test potential names out on real brides and grooms using surveys or with advertising tests to find out what really works.
#4 – Consider Using Your Own Name.
Many wedding professional who are artists or performers really ARE their business. In these cases, it can make sense to use your own name as a part of your business because you’re branding it with your identity.
Using your first and/or last name, especially if it’s evocative, can be a perfect, simple choice. Vivian Photography or Paradise Entertainment works very well.
Our own DJ mentor named his business DJ Music & More, a name that sounded just like every other DJ company, and no one remembered it. People always referred him by his name, and he wished he’d had the foresight to use it for his own wedding business.
#5 – Make sure it’s available.
Before you finalize your name, make sure it’s available. Check local businesses, trademarks and domains so that you can own a website to match your new business name.
This is super important, so don’t skip this step! The last thing you want is a great business name that belongs to a big company who decides to sue you for everything you’ve got.
More Naming Resources
If you’re still stumped, there is help available. You can hire a professional to come up with a name (a good name can cost you as much as $80,000!) or you can use some of these tools and resources.
- Naming.net and Wordoid – Use these free online naming tools to generate ideas.
- Lingzini - This site checks domain name availability.
- Name Station – Check domain availability or hold a naming contest.
Crowdsource Your Name
- Naming Force or Squad Help – Host a contest for the best name and let the public help you out.
- Go to LinkedIn Groups or the Wordlab forums.
- Ask your friends and family. BEWARE: you’re going to get lots of horrible ideas!
Whatever you do, it’s worth taking the time to come up with the right name for your wedding business. Spend at least a week brainstorming before you commit, let some time pass and test out a few variations before settling on one.
How did you pick your business name?