You’ve finally made the break. Goodbye wage slave, hello entrepreneur. You’ve stress tested your idea to the point of destruction and it came through unscathed. The funding is finally in place. The premises are secured. You and your partners have pledged undying commitment to the cause. Failure is not an option. Now all you need to do is come up with a brand name. Well, that shouldn’t prove to be too difficult. Just decide whether it’s going to be descriptive, indicating what the company, product or service does e.g. Toys’R’Us. Or whether you’re going to invent a name e.g. Xerox. Then there are always experiential names built on the feeling or experience the brand delivers e.g. Virgin. Or the tried and tested acronym, an abbreviation of a descriptive name e.g. IBM (International Business Machines).

Well, that’s a start. Now you need to make sure your brand name is distinctive. Does it stand out from amongst the competition? It needs to be easy to say and sound good, when you say it out loud. It has to be memorable or it will never be front of mind. It needs to clearly express your brand’s personality. And it has to look good when seen online and offline. In fact, coming up with the right brand name for your start up, is probably the most difficult part of your start up’s marketing. The options are almost endless and yet the chance of getting it wrong is always there. But there’s a way to make sure you don’t spend frustrated weeks and months grappling with the problem. Don’t leave it to the last minute, with everything in place and ready to go. Give yourself enough time to go through the process. Until you’ve explored all of the options above and applied all of the tests, you won’t find your Amazon, Google or Facebook. It’s hard work but having a brand name you and your customers love, is more than worth it.

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