Naming your business is truly the first step of branding—and it’s a big one. While brand naming isn’t included in our primary service offerings, we do have it as an add on option for branding and web design projects. It’s your first and best opportunity to tell potential clients what you’re about. A name can make or break your marketing strategy, and changing it after the fact can be complicated and expensive. No pressure, right?
A good business name is effective and intriguing. It gives potential customers an idea of what to expect without being too generic. It leaves a lasting impression.
If you’re about to take the leap and start a lifestyle business, or make your interior design business official, here are some things to keep in mind:
When deciding on a name for your brand, you might be tempted to put your creative hat on and choose something as unique as possible. And while your business name does need to stand out, it also needs to be practical. Think of a few identifying words in your industry and find a way to work one in if you can. If you’re an interior designer, for instance, a couple obvious words you could include are designs and interiors. By incorporating key words, you will improve your search engine rankings and make it easier for your customers to find you.
A lot of small business owners use their own name for their lifestyle brand. It’s an easy way to guarantee that your business name is unique to you, but it can present challenges down the road. As you grow, it might be difficult to step away from the spotlight when everything has your name stamped on it.
When brainstorming a name, think of what sets you apart—your particular style or way of doing things. What will draw customers to your process or products or portfolio? What will your ideal client consider what they describe want their home to look like?
In case this doesn’t go without saying, type your chosen name in search engines. Just because you haven’t heard of the business, doesn’t mean that it does not exist. Be sure you aren’t accidentally copying someone else, and by all means, do not deliberately copy someone else. It’s okay to draw inspiration, but not to duplicate. Even if it isn’t a business within your industry, if they have a solid following, confusion could ensue.
Check with a copyright and trademark attorney. Just because a name has been used, doesn’t mean it’s absolutely out of the question. Trademarks can allow overlap if the industry and location vary enough.
Say the name out loud. And then say it again. A good brand name rolls off the tongue and begs to be said. Alliteration is widely used, along with plays-on-words. Bounce your ideas off a few creative friends and see what they think.
To run a lifestyle business, you have to be passionate about what you’re doing. You need a name to match. Try to pick a name that holds some significance or meaning in your life as it pertains to your business. This will set the stage for your brand story and will give you a launching pad for sharing your “why” with potential customers.
Don’t make it too complicated either. Using numbers for words and weird, overdone spelling is very early 2000s and makes your business difficult to identify and remember. When a customer is trying to figure out how to pronounce your brand name, it takes their focus away from your bomb design skills.
One of the beautiful things about running a business in a creative industry is having the freedom to think outside of conventional parameters. If you want a name that is creative, go for it! Just keep in mind that you might have to work extra hard to promote SEO in subheads and page footers. And be certain that it isn’t too trendy; you want your brand name to stand the test of time and change.
A unique and effective business name makes our job as a branding and web design expert (and yours as owner) so much easier. If you have thoughts or questions about this post, our inboxes are always open. You can reach us directly here. In the meantime, we would love to hear some of your favorite brand names to draw inspiration from. Drop them in the comments!
Feature photo from IDCO client Lexi Westergard Design.
For more tips on expanding your interior design portfolio’s exposure or lifestyle brand’s website, check out these posts:
The Identité Collective is a full service creative studio for interior designers and boutique lifestyle brands. Offering bespoke branding, web design and social media content creation, we help brands built around beautiful living elevate their digital presence to represent the physical spaces they design. Want to work together? Shoot us an inquiry here.