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Entrepreneurs Explain How They Came Up With Their Business Name

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The idea of exactly what your business is going to be usually comes first. Secondly, most often, is giving a title to your idea. What exactly is going to be the name of your business? Some people turn to their childhood for inspiration or a beloved family pet. It could be a made up word you dream of one night and feel it has the right ring to it. Even still there are some people who study foreign words for the perfect meaning behind their chosen business. Whatever the inspiration or relation may be, the naming of your business is one of the most important parts of becoming a CEO. Having a brand behind a strong title can make all the difference in the world.

Market Research

An ode to the healthy mama brand name. And what an ode it deserves. The truth is, left to my own devices, the name of the brand would have been happy mama… luckily, the majority ruled; the  healthy mama® brand name was born. We did market research on line to determine the viability of our brand concept, polled 500 women in our target demographic (pregnant or nursing) and asked for their opinion on not only the concept, but the brand name options. 14 names were provided to choose from- a whopping 27% selected healthy mama with the next favorite name coming in at 11% and happy mama coming in at a mere 9%. The healthy mama brand name truly embodies how pregnant and nursing women want to feel. I am thrilled that we posed it to our audience and better yet, that we listened.

Thanks to Rachel Katz-Galatt, healthy mama ®

A Philosophy

At its core, Off Madison Ave isn’t a name as it is a philosophy. When we selected the agency’s name, we wanted something that would representative of an alternative to business as usual. A company name that would imply lateral thinking and alternative methods of solving problems than what others had done before us. From our nontraditional office atmosphere to our integration of teams, and our exploration of new communication technologies, Off Madison Ave continues down the path we set off in providing the kind of marketing options that other agencies don’t. And our name embodies that more than anything else.

Thanks to Roger Hurni, Off Madison Ave

Women Feeling Beautiful About Fitness

I wanted women to feel beautiful when they thought about fitness, and what better image makes you feel beautiful than flowers! When you work out, you truly bloom like a flower into the happy, confident, and healthy person you want to be. I also wanted the women using Fitness Flower to think of something lovely and really enjoy it. We also like the alliteration with Fitness! Fitness Flower flowed so well, and the entire line was instantly visualized. The name truly stuck!

Thanks to Estelle Shaw, Fitness Flower

A Tribute to My Marriage & Shows What We Do

Wisegate is a name that is two things. First, it is a tribute to my husband and marriage as it is a combination of our last names. Second, it is perfect for what we do: through this gate lies the wisdom of your peers. I married the right person to have this great company name AND the company name perfectly says what we are all about. How cool is that?

Thanks to Sara Gates, Wisegate

It Describes What We Do & Who We Do It For

We chose the business name because it described what we do and who we do it for. What do we do? We proctor exams. Who do we proctor for? Universities. ProctorU started from within a university, and higher education was our first focus. It was quite simple for us to chose a name and we’re thrilled that the name has grown to be recognized and trusted all over the world.

Thanks to Don Kassner, ProctorU

Derives from Tabula Rasa

Contrary to popular belief, our company name Taboola does not come from the salad. Taboola derives from ‘Tabula Rasa’ which means blank slate in Latin. The concept is based on the fact that people are born without any built-in content; whatever knowledge they learn is based on experience and perception. In mathematics, ‘tabula rasa’ refers to the act of trying to solve an equation that has many variables but devoid of insights as to how to solve it. So, one must try heuristics and values to understand and predict the answer until solved. Unlike search engines where people type what information they’re looking for, Taboola does the exact opposite, trying to predict what information people may love and never knew existed.

Thanks to Adam Singolda, Taboola

I Wanted Something Catchy

My first goal with my business name, as is most peoples’, was to come up with something catchy. A lot of of dating services have really obvious names, which I wanted to avoid. It was also important to be something that men would be comfortable with. The name Stef and the City came up in conversation and became a test market. Following this I came up with “revitalize your social life” which flowed well with Stef and the City. We found guys prefer a dating service that isn’t obvious and that women also feel comfortable because it comes across as more natural.

Thanks to Stef Safran, Stef and the City

It’s What The Kids Wanted

When we sat down with the kids and asked about things that they loved, they were going through a serious bubblegum phase. All of the kids were going through the same phase at that time, and they said that they wanted the seat to be bubblegum colors. When we went through names, they said simply that it was the bubblegum seat but it was a bubble for your bum. And so the rest is history!

Thanks to Grainne Kelly, BubbleBum

Our First Name Was A Mouthful

Before we were Voices.com, we used to be called InteractiveVoices.com which as you can see is a mouthful and for some, difficult to type. We decided to shorten our name to Voices and sought to purchase the domain name Voices.com only to find that someone else already owned it. As a voice-over company, this name would be the best thing that could ever happen to us in terms of branding and ranking at the top of the search engines for industry keywords. That being said, if the owner knew how valuable this property was to us, he may have priced the domain higher than we could have afforded at the time. I approached our corporate lawyer and general counsel, and asked if he’d approach the seller saying that he’s representing a potential buyer. Would he sell, and if so, at what price? Well, to our surprise we got a reply with the price tag of $50,000. That was more cash than we had on hand, so I proceeded to set-up meetings with every financial institution in the City of London. Despite my best efforts, I was unable to raise a single penny towards the dream name. Then Phil, our lawyer, taught us an important lesson: Never take no for an answer. He suggested that we go back and counter-offer $30,000 (slightly more than half) and send quarterly payments of $5000, for the next 6 quarters. Now, that was something we could handle. And you know you what? He accepted! With a solid legal agreement in place and for a small investment of $5000 we were able to relaunch our website and start marketing ourselves as ‘Voices.com.

Thank you to David Ciccarelli, Voices.com

A Passion for Design & Shopping

I have always had a passion for design…and an equally great passion for shopping, so it only makes sense that I would combine them into fashion design! The name “I Bambini” is the Italian phrase for “the children” or “the babies”. While sitting around talking about the idea of starting my clothing line, my husband, who grew up in a military family that was stationed in Italy, blurted out “I Bambini!” and if seemed like the perfect fit. For the logo, I tried to think of something that was associated with the adorable-ness of kids…and baby feet came to me. Voila! The logo and brand was made!

Thanks to Kim Williams, I Bambini

Looking for Something Transparent & Consistent

We wanted the name to be as transparent as possible and consistent with the brand so the first name we naturally came up with was “Roomie”. It was common and would be easy for people to identify from the start what the business of our company is which is simply to help people in finding the Right Room, and Right Roommate or “Roomie” as many call it. Using this as a starting point we began to research if the name was actually available and shortly found out that is was not. After this we tried a few other names and versions of the names but most we discovered most were not available. Many times we would find that although a domain would be available it may not be available on Facebook and/or Twitter, or that in may already be in use on someone’s blog. I’d say this was the hardest part of the name finding process not really coming up with it. After spending a few weeks and researching a couple of different name we finally came up with the idea of just dropping the “e” off of “Roomie” to make it just “Roomi”. The name wasn’t the most unique but it was unique in the fact that with just a small change were able to make a common word and term and leverage the recognition for our own brand use. And essentially that is the story of how and why we chose “Roomi” as our company name

Thanks to  Ajay Yadav, Roomi

3 Reasons

Our company name, Glass Handbag, was actually derived from three intertwining reasons. The first; our founder is a photographer and a glass sculpture collector, one day she took a marvelous black and white photo of an inspiring piece we had purchased. Thus the “Glass” of Glass Handbag. This photo was used as our main logo for the first years of our business and can still be seen on our custom handbag boxes. Secondly; the idea that you can see in and into glass is an analogy for our lighted handbags, which you
can also see inside due to our patented light panel. Third, the simple rhyming of “Glass” with “class”.

Thanks to Christopher Nelson, Glass Handbag

It’s A Magical Combination of 3 Simple Words

In March of 2009, I was en route to a conference in Vail Colorado from Newark Airport. I opened an email from a friend who had thanked me for a recent day at the races remarking how he was captured by all it had to offer. As the plane took off I simply replied “now you know what it means to embrace the race”. As I hit send, the wheels starting churning and I had made so many notes my blackberry and laptop had run out of power, EMBRACE THE RACE® was born. Since then we have secured Intellectual Property Rights to the phrase for both horse racing and clothing. We have launched an entire apparel and accessories brand for horse racing enthusiasts around the phrase and further secured Intellectual Property Rights to The Apparel for the Horse Racing Lifestyle® and The Official Apparel for the Horse Racing®. So why did I name my company EMBRACE THE RACE®? Because it is a magical combination of three simple words that captures our customers’ imaginations and heart strings. It speaks to who they are, how and why the follow horse racing and what they want to tell others about the sport and why they love it. EMBRACE THE RACE® also speaks powerfully about our culture as a company. We are passionate about horse racing and how we serve our customers. We have undertaken an enormous responsibility to represent one of the world’s oldest and most prolific sports with its own brand – the first brand in the history of the game – and each day we EMBRACE that opportunity and all the excitement it affords us.

Thanks to Mike DeAnzeris, EMBRACE THE RACE®

We Threw Around So Many Different Names

We threw around so many different names when trying to decide what to call our business, and for a while had a hard time coming up with a name that helped us stand out from the crowd, but that also didn’t pigeon hole us as we continued to grow our business and diversify our product offering. Our business started with cell phone charging stations and all of the competition had the word ‘charge’ in their names. We also wanted to come up with a name that could become ubiquitous with public charging stations. I asked myself over and over what is it that people get when they use one of our stations? One day, I was driving into the office and it hit me, when people use our charging stations they get a quick boost! We took that concept, changed up the spelling of the word ‘quick’ to be ‘kwik’ because we thought it was more unique and came up with “KwikBoost” and it’s worked out really well for us.

Thanks to Joe Mecca, Kwikboost

I Had 15 Internships

After completing 15 internships in college, I was clearly the Intern Queen, hence the title of my business, Intern Queen Inc. & InternQueen.com”

Thanks to Lauren Berger, InternQueen.com

I Listed Words I Liked

First, I made a list of words that I liked. At that point, I was going to go with Jewelry Obsession, but my husband suggested that I keep it neutral, so if I branched out into other things, the name could still apply. So, I decided on Creative Obsession. At that point I googled it to make sure it was available. Then, I immediately applied for my tax ID number and registered my name.

Thanks to Lisa Lavado, Creative Obsession

A Nickname

We get this question a lot! The BuddyLove Showroom name comes from a nickname dubbed for the husband of our founder, Grayson. The name BuddyLove was given to Buddy DiFonzo in high school by Grayson’s parents before the two ever started dating and were just friends. Eight years later, we were married and launching our first business together and the struggle to find a good name was a short one. BuddyLove Showroom & Clothing Label has now become a lifestyle brand for women’s contemporary fashion.

Thanks to Grayson, Buddylove Clothing Label

It Rolled Off My Tounge

Years ago I was at a networking event, waiting in line with about 30 other people to give me 60 second commercial in front of a room of about 200. I was having a bit too much fun chatting with my friend behind me when I was tapped on the shoulder and had a microphone shoved in my face. I grabbed the microphone, paused for a split second, and then off my tongue rolled “Hi everyone, my name is Shauna the Tax Goddess.” Every head in the room spun to look at me, including one of my favorite sales guru. At the end of the meeting he came up to me and said: “Everything. That name needs to be on EVERYTHING!” and thus Tax Goddess Business Services, PC – a Tax & Accounting CPA firm in Scottsdale, AZ – was born!

Thanks to Shauna Wekherlien, Tax Goddess

I Found A Need & Filled It with My Business Name

My frustrated prospects kept telling me how they felt – I wasn’t listening. One day I stopped and really heard them. While working with tradies and small business owners, we discussed their local advertising and marketing attempts. They kept saying: “I’ve tried everything to make the phone ring – I just feel there’s got to be a missing piece.” I knew they wanted to boost their local work – without advertising, and I knew I had had the Missing Piece.

Thanks to Paul Johnson, Missing Piece Marketing

It’s My Mom’s Last Name

I used Hoo-Kong because that’s my moms last name of whom I truly adore. HooKong is the anglicized version of “Ho” which is the name my great Grandfather was born with. Because so many people had that name in China, my great Grandfather decided to change it and that’s how the name came about. Hoo-Kong is unique, just like the jewelry I create. International, different, bold and makes someone ask “what does Hoo-Kong mean”? I love it!

Thanks to H.K. Productions Inc.

It Was Catchy

I am a Personal Finance Expert, to the modern woman. Purse a Empowerment, is my company. I provide real time, proven solutions to women and their money management challenges. As, I brainstormed names for my companies I drummed up catchy ways to get women to think of their arm handy (purse) as more than a status symbol, but as a totem to remind them to make empowering financial decisions that would add value to their Purse. It works like a charm, as women often are attracted to the glitz and glam of a purse, but as they get closer to my branding they find that Purse Empowerment, is less about brands but more about how you maintain your bucks.

Thanks to Shani Curry St.Vil, Purse Empowerment

We Believe Everyone Should be Free2Luv Themselves

At Free2Luv, we make it our daily mission to empower & uplift our youth because when we raise confident, empowered children, we minimize bullying & teen suicide. We empower, engage & enlighten our youth globally to know that they are perfect just the way they are & they can use their voice for good. We are a nonprofit global movement of youth who are agents for change, inspiring other youth to be their best selves. Success for us is one more child standing up, speaking out and letting their voice be heard.

Thanks to Tonya Sandis, Free2Luv

I Asked What Results Do My Clients Really Want

My business focuses on helping individuals and companies unleash creativity and innovation. To name my company, I took myself through a simple process. First I asked myself, what results do my clients really want? Then I brainstormed a list of possible name and word combinations describing the results and benefits of working with me. Then I did searches for available URLS that would be easy to remember, easy to spell, and would have social media profiles available. Finally, I asked myself, would my clients resonate with this name and have a “Wow” factor when they heard it?

Thanks to Marianne Mullen, Awaken Creativity

It Was A Response Customers Gave

‘I like that lamp’ is the literal response I want my customers to have when make their own awesome lamp from scratch. It reflects my brand’s upbeat personality, not just because it’s fun to say out loud, but it bears a resemblance to a quip in the movie ‘Anchorman’. So it’s either amusing or inspirational, depending on whether you’re a Will Ferrell fan!

Thanks to Kiri Masters, I Like That Lamp

It Was A Hard Decision

Choosing our name was actually one of the hardest decisions we made. As there were a few of us involved in the founding of the company we set a hard rule that anyone could veto any name. We all formed lists of suggestions, focusing on words related to our product – at the time this was almost only freelance fire performers. We spoke to friends and family, crowd sourced as many names as possible and were ruthless in dismissing choices that any of us disliked for any reason. Our reasoning was that it would be unbearable to market and work for a company with a name you really disliked, and if there was any resentment to begin with this was only likely to grow over time.

Thanks to James Guiver, Surefire Circus Theatre

We Named It After Our Boyfriend’s Band Song

We had our inventory but no name when we began. While on the phone with each other and sitting on the godaddy.com domain search. Tanya suggested we name our business after our boyfriends band song “Goodbye Girls” but spell it b-u-y. No one else was using it that way and it broadly but perfectly described our inventory! Now 4 years later, we may not have those boyfriends but along with national press exposure and a new brother store, Hello Boys, we think we made the right decision. It’s exciting seeing the brand grow with the name, now we call our friendstamers (friends & customers usually follow your business on a social network) GGs and have a full line of Goodbuy Girl merch that consistently sells out.

Thanks to Kimberly Davison & Tanya Coe, Good Buy Girls Nashville and Hello Boys Nashville

It Was The Perfect Name

Before launching our concert website, I felt that choosing the perfect business name was essential. But I wanted to focus on originality to avoid looking like just another generic website. Importantly, I wanted the name to compliment the site’s slogan; ‘Never miss a concert again’. Knowing the mentality of concert-goers (myself included), some people develop an actual “need” for attending concerts. Whether it’s the need to see their favorite performers coming to town or the need to get a frequent taste of the concert experience, concerts can be quite addicting to some people. So about two years ago my friend came to me and said “I just HAVE to go to this concert”, and I replied “So you can get your *fix*?” She laughed, but my eyes lit up after coming up with a perfect name for our business; ConcertFix.

Thanks to John Drabkowski, ConcertFix

Drawing Inspiration from Elephants

It’s a smartphone app that helps you find merchandise in stores around you — bringing the kind of ease of finding stuff on Amazon.com to brick and mortar shops. I am an avid wildlife photographer and nature enthusiast, and have spent a lot of time living amongst, studying and photographing elephants and other wildlife in the jungles of Sri Lanka, my birthplace. I drew inspiration from Elephants and their social characteristics when developing the Elephanti shopping app. Elephants are smart, they’re very social, and they never forget–just like Elephanti.

Thanks to Lalin Michael Jinasena, Elephanti.com

 

About Gresham Harkless Jr.

Gresham Harkless is a Media Consultant for Blue 16 Media and the Blogger-in-Chief for CEO Blog Nation. CEO Blog Nation is a community of blogs for entrepreneurs and business owners. Started in much the same way as most small businesses, CEO Blog Nation captures the essence of entrepreneurship by allowing entrepreneurs and business owners to have a voice. CEO Blog Nation provides news, information, events and even startup business tips for entrepreneurs, startups and business owners to succeed.

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