Naming your brand is one of the most significant phases of your entrepreneurial journey. And because your name shapes people’s first impression of your business, it influences how potential consumers and investors perceive your firm.
Unfortunately, many companies make costly mistakes when searching for the appropriate name. The Washington Redskins, for example, were refused a trademark by the USPTO because their name was disrespectful to Native Americans. And this is just one of the cases.
That’s why, in this post, we’ll be leveraging our experience holding thousands of Squadhelp naming contests to show you the most common mistakes businesses make when searching for a name and how to prevent them.
Six Mistakes Unwary Entrepreneurs Make
Finding a name that resonates with your consumers and tells a compelling narrative is critical to developing a solid brand that’ll stand the test of time. However, to achieve this, you must avoid the following mistakes when naming your company:
1. Unfavorable Translations in Other Languages
When choosing a name for your brand, it’s critical to evaluate how it’ll translate into different languages. This process is essential, and the business owners that overlooked this ended up with terrible brand names.
This error can give your clients a negative early impression of your brand and should be avoided, regardless of whether you want to run a small business or (not). You never know how big your company will become tomorrow.
In addition, the internet has turned the corporate world into a worldwide community. This implies that more individuals from other locations can easily reach your business via the web, no matter how far it is from them, and a poor reputation spreads quickly.
Hyundai, which built the Kona, is one manufacturer that committed this name mistake. It experienced linguistic faults in three separate languages; nevertheless, it isn’t the only automobile manufacturer to make such an error.
2. Choosing an Overly Popular Name
When selecting a name for your company, it is critical to ensure that the name is distinct and unique. You could run a competitive search to see whether the name or something similar, is currently being used. If the name is too common, customers may find it difficult to distinguish your company from others with similar names.
There are various reasons why you should avoid using famous names for your business, one of which is the high likelihood of the name already being trademarked.
For example, the firm “Fruit of the Tomb,” was sued for trademark infringement because it was too similar to the well-known clothing brand “Fruit of the Loom.” This demonstrates that utilizing names that are too similar to existing ones makes you appear generic and may also get you in legal trouble.
Furthermore, the originality of business names lends a sense of innovation and imagination to businesses. These qualities are commendable and can attract more clients.
3. Choosing a Name That Infringes on the Trademark of Another
It is critical to ensure that the name you choose for your company does not infringe on another person’s trademark. If you select a name that is too similar to another company’s, you may be sued for trademark infringement.
A name that infringes on another company’s trademark is terrible for business and may cost you a lot of money on court settlements and rebranding. Therefore, to avoid any problems with trademark infringement, utilize the USPTO trademark search to see whether your brand’s name is similar to that of another business.
Most cases of trademark violations stem from failing to investigate your name ideas properly. So make sure to take this process seriously.
4. Picking a Name That Does Not Have a Corresponding Domain Name
A good domain name is needed for every business that wants to be successful in the online market. Obtaining a matching domain name for your brand name is the best approach to improving the efficacy of your online presence.
When designing a unique name for your company, it is vital to ensure that the word or phrase is available as a domain name. Choosing a name without a corresponding domain name can make it more difficult for your clients to discover your company online.
For example, Alphabet, Google’s parent company, does not own “alphabet.com,” causing it to lose a lot of traffic to the genuine proprietors of the site. Other corporations, such as Tesla and Facebook, had to retrace their steps and purchase a comparable domain name, regardless of how expensive it was.
5. Not Testing Your Name With Your Target Audience
The power of a strong business name to captivate and interest its target audience is its distinct advantage. Any brand name that isn’t strong enough to achieve this has failed.
Before agreeing on a name for your brand, it’s critical to run it by your target demographic. An audience test can help you choose the perfect name that appeals to your target clients. It may be challenging for your brand to gain momentum if the name does not resonate with your target demographic.
Remember that if your name isn’t enticing enough to attract your target audience to purchase your product, it’s not good enough.
6. Failing to Pick the Best Tone That Connects With Customers
When selecting a name for your company, it is critical to ensure that the name creates the appropriate tone for your company and target audience. Customers could be hesitant to take your company seriously if the name does not reflect the tone of your company and target demographic.
Krispy Kreme Doughnuts achieved popularity because its name was lighthearted and reflected the pleasant, relaxing vibe of munching, which appealed to its target demographic and fit the business model.
Choosing the right name for your business venture is critical to its success. As a result, it’s critical to verify that your name is distinct, does not infringe on another person’s trademark, has a matching domain name, creates the right tone for your company, and connects with your target audience.
You may discover the right name for your business by avoiding these typical blunders and concentrating on clear communication.