Whether it’s your name, your significant other’s name, your child’s name, your pet’s name, or the name of a business, person, place, or establishment carries weight. Names are everywhere, and names matter, especially the name of a business.
While high-quality products or services and customer service are the most crucial part of a business, the perfect company name is another important factor affecting your branding and creating a lasting impression.
This poses the question: what is your business name doing for you?
If you’re in the market for a rebrand or your company is just starting, a company name can provide a big step in the right direction. Many are aware of just how a brand name influences consumers.
But there’s more to a name than just picking something that describes you.
Let’s dive into the nitty-gritty of what makes a great company name and how more abstract business names take the cake.
Generic Business Names
Just as chain restaurants can lose their thrill, business names that contain generic wording and information, such as general information like city names or Metropolitan areas, can be viewed as ordinary, plain, or not worth a second view by potential customers or clients.
This mindset comes from the phrase, “I’ve seen one. I’ve seen them all.” Some owners may step up from generic wording by utilizing trending “coin phrases” that correlate to the business audience.
While the owner may view this as being creative, this can have unintended effects. Including generic wording and information in a business name can also confuse people into thinking the business does not provide a service or product to a particular area that it, in fact, does.
Also troublesome for generic business names is the high probability that the owner will encounter trademark complications. On the other hand, the client is highly unlikely to question the origin of the business name because it’s self-explanatory.
Abstract Business Names
Some business owners choose to utilize an abstract business name or use a creative “word” or “phase” they made up to stand out and prevent potential trademark complications.
Although abstract business names can be appreciated for creativity and originality, the business owners will likely have to explain how they came up with the name.
Christening your business with an abstract or random name might seem a bit odd. After all, these “blind” company names usually don’t indicate to new customers what the company does.
However, some of the world’s most successful brands chose abstract business names. What’s more, they likely didn’t leave it up to chance. Think Google, Apple, Shell, Starbucks, and Amazon. These brands have proved powerful, but why are their names so effective? There is a method to their madness.
1. Abstract business names are more flexible
Naming your business based on your service and location can seem like a straightforward choice. For instance, if you sell furniture in the North West, “North West Furniture” would be an obvious choice. However, if you unexpectedly move or expand past just furniture, your name is now obsolete. Whatever future direction the company takes, the first thing anyone will think when they see your company name is just furniture. Real-life examples like Good Housekeeping Magazine and the Carphone Warehouse in the UK showcase this issue. While their businesses have grown and changed, their names are stuck in the past.
On the other hand, abstract business names can allow for more flexibility when it comes to product lines, locations, and markets because they’re nonspecific. They can work at any time and won’t appear dated. When you’re thinking about naming your business, remember that abstract can also mean timeless. (We chose Hatchwise ourselves.)
2. Abstract business names mean connectivity
If you need proof of the power of abstract branding, just look at Amazon and Google. Amazon is the world’s leading online retailer, and Google is the internet’s leading search engine. Both of them use abstract business names, and choosing an abstract name was certainly not an accident or a gamble. Both companies knew their success and expansion would need to connect with potential consumers and become ingrained in their minds right away.
Whereas some successful companies rely on their logo for branding, abstract names can become a significant part of their brand language and help the company to work its way into people’s everyday conversations. Corporate logos can pair with the flexibility of abstract naming and branding, providing creatives with nearly limitless possibilities when it comes to design.
3. Abstract company names are easier to protect
Competition for unique business names and brand presence both on and offline has become fierce. Anyone who has tried registering their ideal domain name is aware of the struggle when trying to find available options that fit your brand.
Abstract names are unique, making them easier to register and protect. People can also remember them easier than a traditional name. What’s more, they are harder to abbreviate. Didn’t think that was important, did you? Because humans like to abbreviate things, it can actually be a potential concern.
Let’s say your company, “New Mexico Plumbing,” is a successful plumbing business. All your local, tried-and-true customers call you “‘NMP” for short. Well, that’s fine until a copycat competitor comes along with the name “New Mexico Contractors,” or NMC. Everything about them is so similar to you that customers get confused. Because of that, NMC can steal some of your loyal customers. Whether naming your own business or helping a client, thinking abstractly can help you avoid these issues.
4. Abstract company names stand out.
As well as being great for visual printed and digital material, abstract business names sound great in sentences. Our brains are hardwired to pick out irregularities in speech, so when we first heard “I Googled it,” we noticed. It makes the listener stop and take notice. It’s also a million times easier to say than WeSellUsedCarsForLessOnline.com.
While abstract brands might require an initial explanation, the benefits are huge. Every company has to diversify. New opportunities can present. By choosing an abstract name from the start, you can be sure your branding is future-proof.
The decision to go into business should not be taken lightly. It costs tremendous sacrifice, hard work, and financing. If you’re serious about sending the right message to the public and potential clients, you shouldn’t rush brainstorming, researching, and finalizing the business name, slogan, and logo.
You’ll want to conduct trademark research to ensure that your business name is not already registered, and you’ll really want to consider choosing a more abstract business name that stands out and lends itself to easy conversation.
You want a striking, creative name that your customers can attach to the amazing care and products or services you provide. When your client refers others to you through word of mouth, they’ll need a memorable name to pass on.
When you’re thinking, “How do I name my small business?” Hatchwise company naming contests are a great option. Our creatives have tons of experience helping companies of all sizes find the perfect name. They understand the importance of business name and logo creation and have helped thousands find the perfect combo.
Want help naming your business? Start a naming contest on Hatchwise to get tons of options from experienced marketers in no time! Click here to start your own business name contest. The unique, abstract ideas will start coming in just a few hours.