Did you know that one error, especially one involving the brand name you select, can damage all the hard work you’ve put in while building your brand? Yes, picking an offensive brand name is one of the worst things you can do for your business.
That’s because your business name forms and impacts your brand’s personality. So, it’s crucial that you ensure your brand’s name accurately expresses your company’s values.
The good news is that choosing an intriguing name for your brand can be achieved by simply using a brand name generator, brainstorming, or getting excellent crowdsourced business names from a naming agency.
But, whatever naming route you pick, ensure you watch out and avoid the following naming errors that can harm your brand’s reputation.
Names That Are Offensive or Easily Misunderstood
Companies tend to attract more of their target clients when they share similar political, cultural, and environmental viewpoints. It’s not news that the ordinary individual has strong feelings about these sensitive issues and would be likelier to buy from a company that shares those feelings.
Although some founders might view it as an edgy marketing strategy, if your business decides to focus on these issues, even if it’s via your company’s advertisements or messaging like Gillette, you’ll eventually wind up excluding a significant portion of your audience because individuals who oppose the causes you endorse are always less likely to buy your goods or use your services.
When picking your brand name, avoid names like ‘Spank Me Santa Lipstick,’ ‘Druggie,’ or ‘Pee Cola,’ as they can easily drag up unfavorable memories for your customers.
Overly Complex Brand Names
We advise companies to stay away from names like ‘WeAretheSuperlativeConspiracy,’ ‘Troglodyte Homunculus,’ ‘Aeropostale,’ and ‘Euymhod’ since these kinds of words are needlessly tricky for customers to say or recall when searching online.
If you don’t come up with an appealing brand name that is brief and memorable, a large percentage of your clients will struggle to recall your company’s name, much alone recommend it to their friends and loved ones. But, if you insist on using a long brand name, try making it an abbreviation, like H&M, EOS, IBM, and 3M.
Since 80% of clients forget about branded items after three days, make it your top goal to come up with concise, original, and memorable names for your business.
Remember, your brand name must be memorable, sound nice, and be simple to say for your customers to quickly remember it. We’ve found that short, simple words always grab your customers’ attention more rapidly than long, complicated ones.
Weird Foreign Translations
Giving your brand a strong internet presence has the benefit of allowing clients from all over the world to reach and interact with your brand. However, having a worldwide identity has its drawbacks. One of them is selecting a brand name with an unusual meaning in a foreign language.
And if your brand’s name is derogatory in your client’s native language, your potential customers will be hesitant to utilize your products or services. We saw this when the names of two well-known products, Mazda’s Laputa and Nokia’s Lumia, both meant ‘prostitute’ in Spanish, forcing Spanish-speaking buyers to reject these products.
Business owners trying to find the right name should not confine their language research to a single language. Ensure you only decide on a brand after doing a thorough study across the major languages around the world and the top languages in the market you’re trying to enter.
Doing this can help you ensure that your chosen name will be acceptable to your international clientele.
Put Your Clients First
At this point, it may sound cliché, but most business owners get so profit-driven that they forget that their company’s main goal is to satisfy their target clients. So make every effort to prioritize your client’s requirements and desires.
Customers quickly lose interest in profit-focused brands because nobody wants to do business with a firm that they feel is uninterested in finding creative and innovative solutions to their challenges.
The best way you can position your brand is to select a name that has been well researched, has pleasant meanings in your audience’s language, and is easy to say and search online. By choosing a great name, you will avoid having to rebrand your firm after a few years.
Grant Polachek is the head of branding for Squadhelp.com, 3X Inc 5000 startup and disruptive naming agency. Squadhelp has reviewed more than 1 million names and curated a collection of the best available names on the web today. We are also the world’s leading crowdsource naming platform, supporting clients from early-stage startups to Fortune 500 companies.