Perhaps you’re launching a new business, or maybe it’s time to give a facelift to your whole brand, because your name doesn’t reflect what you do as a company any more. Whatever the situation is, you need a new name—and choosing one can be harder than it looks. Here, at ictQATAR, we’ve launched nearly a dozen of brand names, including Qatar Domains Registry, Fahras Qatar and Mada (Qatar Assistive Technology Center), and found that lots of factors go into creating sticky brand names. Here are our top five:
1. Focus on your target audience. It’s always about your customer preferences, not your own. Learn what language and style they prefer, and you might find that you don’t necessarily need to create a bi-lingual name or using your family name just doesn’t resonate with your customers’ expectations. Run your company name by a focus group and see how it holds up. There are some great free online survey tools available as well – Zoomerang.com is one of them.
2. Is your name easy to spell and pronounce? Think twice before settling on a name that is missing vowels, or is spelled differently from how it is pronounced. If you don’t have millions to spend on advertising, chances are that names like Namez and Flickr are not for you. Stick with something simple and straightforward.
3. Know your priorities. A meaningful name can do quite a bit for your marketing efforts – create free buzz, describe what you do, differentiate your product from the competition, or propel your company to the top of the search engine listings. The challenge is – you have to decide which objective is your priority and stick to it.
4. Check for domain names and social media availability. Claim your digital real estate early by checking name availability on sites like domains.qa for local .qa names, and namechk.com for social media.
5. Less is more. Even though you might be tempted to describe your business as the “best in town”, “advanced”, and “superior” – don’t. Remember, search engines will make you compete with all other companies with similar names, and it will not be just in your industry. Plus, you will sound too generic and will run a risk of being ranked low.
Your business name will last longer than any other marketing investments you will make – make it count, and we hope it will work for you, not against you.
Do you have any naming tips or stories to share? Over to you.