Creating Business Names and LogosPosted by Camden Smith on Aug 23, 2010 in Blog, Business Development, Graphic Design
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This blog will cover three keys to opening your own business:
- Naming Your Business: How to Choose a Name
- Logo Creation: Necessary or not?
Naming Your Business: How to Choose a Name
We all like to be creative especially when we are passionate about something such as opening up our own business, but how do you choose the name of a business?
You would think you would just choose items or words you like and it would be simple, right? Wrong! Aside from finding a name that you like, you have to find a name that is not copyrighted, trademarked or taken on the web if you want to have a web site – otherwise you could be in for an uphill battle.
For example, my name is Camden Smith and I wanted to name my business Camden Communications, but it was already trademarked and the domain was taken so clearly choosing that name would have created unnecessary road blocks to building my business.
First, to find a name you should build a word list of words you like that describe how you feel about your company or how you want customers to feel. Choose words that give a visual picture.
Once you have words you like start combining them with a term that describes your business such as inspection, marketing or whatever activity/service your business provides. The name has to be creative but it has to be understood.
My marketing firm, which I just opened, is called DREAMFly Marketing, but I didn’t arrive at that name willingly. I started with DREAMFly Design and Communication, but quickly learned on LinkedIn that some people thought communication referred to cell phone sales or telemarketing.
After you have two or three business names in the running, then you must search to see if the business is trademarked. To do this, you can search on www.trademarkia.com and you may also apply there for a trademark. The way around these big trademark fees is to copyright the business name in your state.
The last thing you have to do before deciding to officially launch your business is search www.godaddy.com or another web site sales site and see if the url you would need for a web site is actually available. If it is not available, you may need to rethink the name you have your heart set on. Clearly, www.dreamflydesignandcommuncation.com would have been a ridiculous web address.
So, you’ve named your business now. How does it sound? Strong? Passive? Aggressive? How do you want customers to feel about your business and what do you want them to picture in their minds when they hear the name?
Ask friends what they think about your business name and ask them what picture they have in their head when they hear the name. You will know if you’ve chosen the right name.
I asked probably 20 people what they thought about DREAMFly Marketing and every single person said they had the visual picture of flying to their dreams – bingo! Choosing a company name that describes what you do is just as important as one that creates a positive picture in people’s minds.
Logo Creation: Necessary or Not
Without a logo your business name will very simply look like letterhead
Who will that appeal to? If you are doing a business like pet sitting out of your home, you may think it isn’t necessary to have a logo, but if you plan on advertising and designing a web site and business cards, you should have a graphic design that is consistent in all of your marketing work.
You can pay $199 or more for a logo design and trust me you get what you pay for…but it really depends on what kind of logo you need. As a marketing professional, I suggest you use your best judgment – a logo may be something you can wait on whereas applying for a TAX ID and an Limited Liability Corporation application is something that must be immediate.
Although my marketing firm handles graphic design for advertising and brochures, we are not a logo design company. Do not make the mistake of thinking you are a logo designer if you are in fact not a logo designer. This could in fact hurt your business. Most clip art cannot be used in a logo legally.
I personally like www.logonerds.com, because the price is right and the designs don’t use tons of clipart but maintians a rich 3D feel to them. Another good site is www.logomojo.com, but the prices are more expensive ($199) for the same amount of work from Logo Nerds ($68). Choose what is right for the company look you want and need and the price that fits your budget.
How You Plan Determines Your Success
Starting a business is the simple part, but marketing it to clients is challenging. Always remember you start marketing your business, the minute you start thinking about developing it, because you are talking to friends and family about it and contacting other professionals for advice.
Choose a strong, understandable name that can be trademarked and set up as a web site. Make sure to create a logo so that it sets you apart….the rest is up to you. I hope my lessons in this process help you make great choices. Please share this people you feel this may help.
You are welcome to email me at Camden@Dreamflymarketing.com.