3 Mistakes You Don’t Want To Make With Your Company’s Name

You have the idea, the investor, the potential clients… and now you just need a name. This might be the trickiest bit so far, though. The word or words you choose have to reflect your business personality, attract clients and make you stand out among competitors. And, as in any marketing strategy, creativity is the key.

Brand idea


1. Don’t Be a Copycat

If you see a company in your sector that is doing amazingly well, it’s tempting to incorporate some of its approaches – including a similar name – in the hopes to reach a similar success. It’s good to learn from those who are in the next level, but having a very similar name will be counter-productive as it won’t make you stand out – and clients will identify you as an imitator.

The Solutions

  1. Go for a short word. This doesn’t guarantee success but it will be easier to remember by your clients.
  2. Choose a name that leads itself into wordplay. For instance, the company Virgin is so called because one of Richard Branson’s colleagues said ‘we are completely virgin at business.’
  3. You can invent a word too! Don’t feel pressured to have a name that means everything your company is. Sometimes, a suggestion works equally well. For instance, the famous ice-cream brand Haagen-Dazs was named by their owners to resemble a Danish word – they wanted to invoke a sense of old-world tradition and craftsmanship – but it doesn’t mean anything in this language.

2. Don’t resort to the ‘Train Wreck’ Method

It has worked in the past with companies such as Skype (that comes from ‘sky peer-to-peer’) or Spotify (‘spot’ and ‘identify’). But it’s very risky because, in most of the cases, you’ll end up with a very bland name such as Qualiserve for a service franchise or Tranquispa for a spa business.


The Solutions

  1. Get inspiration from literature. For instance, Yahoo owes its name (in part) to a mythological creature created by Jonathan Swift in his famous book Gulliver’s Travels. Starbucks is taken from the name of the first mate in Herman Melville’s novel Moby Dick – the owners wanted to evoke the romance of the seafaring tradition of early coffee traders.
  2. Despite being a dead language, Latin still has an enormous prestigious all over the world, and has becoming a synonym of class and glory. Many international companies have picked names inspired in it, as it is the case of Acer – which means ‘acute’.

 3. Don’t Listen to Everyone

Choosing a name that will reflect your brand in the years to come is a very stressful task, and chances are you’re going to feel tempted to ask everyone’s opinion – colleagues, employees and family. However, if your decision is based on a consensus from all these different people you’ll end up with a very safe – and boring – name.

The Solution

Don’t get too overwhelmed with the infinite possibilities. Instead, take with you a few, reliable people that work directly in your business with you and use their opinion to come up with an original name that has the soul of your brand in it.


Here at Colin Cross Printers we are expert designers, so once you have perfected the perfect name you need to turn it into the perfect logo, and that’s where our design services come in. Contact our friendly team at any time and we’ll be pleased to help!