The idea of exactly what your business is going to be usually comes first. Secondly, most often, it 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 some people 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.
We asked entrepreneurs and business owners about how they came up with a business name, and here are their responses.
#1- Captured the brand essence
It must be meaningful, it must be memorable, and it must be ownable. When it came to naming our own company, Banner Day triumphed because it out-scored our other contenders on all three fronts: It captured the spirit and promise of our brand, it was easy to recall correctly (no spelling or pronunciation issues), and it soared through our creative vetting process and our IP law partners' trademark clearance review with flying colors.
Thanks to Molly Dickinson, Banner Day!
#2- Historically and linguistically influenced
The origin of Tomedes is the name of a dead Colombian language, from the language family Maipurean. However, the word “tomedes” is also a word in the Galician language in Europe, meaning “to take”. Our use of Tomedes as our brand name has brought with it meaning. It’s an old word meaning a derivative of “to get” or “take initiative” but its meaning was not been defined until it became a company. And from its inception, the word Tomedes means has always changed. But one thing remains the same in its meaning: its goal is to make meaningful connections.
Thanks to Ofer Tirosh, Tomedes Translation Company!
#3- Through brand differentiation and playfulness
When we came up with our brand's name, we had a clear goal in mind: we wanted to challenge industry standards with our soon-to-be-established brand. Since it's a very competitive and unforgiving industry, a name that would set us apart from the rest felt fundamental. We always joked that it would take a magic trick or two to become a force in such a competitive niche – so we came up with The Casino Wizard as an ode to that. The name stuck, and it allowed us to build our brand around a concept that almost no one else was even paying attention to.
Thanks to Matt Schwachofer, The Casino Wizard!
#4- Name that integrated the community
Establishing the farm in the Capertee Valley, we knew we wanted to recognize the traditional owners – the Wiradjuri people. We chose the Wiradjuri word “Birramal” as our name, for its translation, meaning “Bush” – which so beautifully describes where we live and the amazing wildlife surrounding us. What we didn't expect was the nickname. During a roadside chat with a neighbor, through the windows of our utes, we discovered that we had quickly gained notoriety in the Valley as being ‘The Lavender Boys'. After another passing conversation, we decided to take on the nickname and share our story through two social media accounts.
Thanks to Nicholas Esdaile-Watts, Birramal Estate!
#5- By improvising
We spent so much time discussing all the ins and outs of how the business would actually function with my business partner, by the time we started thinking about the name we were honestly exhausted and didn't care that much anymore! I glanced at an antique compass hanging on the wall and said “Well, how about FintechCompass?”. He agreed and we never really revisited that decision – and it's already been over 3 years!
Thanks to Ian McKenzie, Fintech Compass!
#6- Used a love and connection-themed name
I'm Dr. Mollie Newton, founder of PetMeTwice and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM). I wanted a name that resonated with the joy and companionship pets bring into our lives. “PetMeTwice” encapsulates the warmth and affection we share with our pets. It’s a gentle reminder of the simple yet profound moments of connection we experience when we spend time with them. The name reflects the reciprocal love between pets and their owners, emphasizing that the more love and care we give to our pets, the more we receive in return.
Thanks to Mollie Newton, PetMeTwice!
#7- Thought of a name that evokes power
The journey to naming our business was quite a thoughtful process. We wanted a name that embodies strength, reliability, and a sense of grandeur, reflecting the robust security solutions we provide. The term “Mammoth” resonated with us as it conveys an image of something powerful and substantial, traits that we strive to embody in all our security offerings. Additionally, the mammoth, as a prehistoric creature, carries a sense of wisdom and endurance through time, which aligns with our commitment to providing long-lasting and intelligent security solutions. The word “Security” was added to clearly communicate our industry and mission.
Thanks to Eugene Klimaszewski, Mammoth Security!
#8- A personalized and alliterative name
My business is called Decluttering Diva and the name came about as I am a soprano singer in my singing group they would say” diva in the house” or words to that effect as I was the only one that could hit the high notes. I love a little alliteration too so to have a catchy name, show a little of my personality as well, and describe what we were about was great.
Thanks to Kristina Duke, Decluttering Diva!
#9- Using the initials of the founder(s)
Our asphalt company MR Roads launched following a merger between two businesses – Platinum Tippers and Pelly-Can Asphalt. We went through a process of trying variations of the two business names, merging them together, and trying to find an option with a new meaning. In the end, we had to shift our thinking and go back to the heart of who we were and find a name that resonated with our clients. My last name is Mikus-M. James' last name is Rolph-R. MR Roads just stood out for us as being authentic and impactful.
Thanks to Daniel Mikus, MR Roads!
#10- Using symbols
I was inspired by the symbol of the bluebird as a representation of hope, happiness, and new beginnings. In the world of alpine sports, a bluebird day is a beautiful, sunny day, perfect for outdoor pursuits. Similarly, our mission is to bring new beginnings and hope to leaders and organizations by helping them reach their full potential. Through our values-based and courageous leadership development programs, we strive to create inclusive, engaging, and sustainable workplaces where teams can thrive and make a positive impact on the world.
Thanks to Cherry Ward, Bluebird Leadership!
#11- From personal experience
When deciding the name for my business, I thought about who we target and the services we offer. One evening, while on a discovery call, they mentioned that they felt like a tiny drop in the ocean. They were in a competitive industry and felt drowned out by the ‘noise' of the competition. My response was to tell them that I'm here to help them cut through the noise—and that's how the name of my agency came to be. We help our clients cut through the noise!
Thanks to Steven Westwood, TTN Agency!
#12- Using straightforward names
I decided to keep things simple. After a brainstorming session that could have made a thesaurus weep, I circled back to the most straightforward name: Lawn Edging. Why? Well, it's precisely what we do – we edge lawns. No need for frills or fancy names like “The Grand Grass Guardians” or “Borderline Brilliance.” Plus, there's a practical side to it. The name ‘Lawn Edging' is pretty nifty for SEO – it's direct, to the point, and exactly what folks punch into their search engines when they're in desperate need of some top-notch lawn bordering.
Thanks to Tom Su, Lawn Edging!
#13- Borrowed from classical languages
I scouted the names of competitors in the industry. I found that they were largely lacking in creativity or individuality and often relied on a pun around the profession. This was something that I really wanted to avoid, so I chose something personal to me – it was my company after all! I grew up enthralled with the stories of Greek Mythology, and this is something close to my heart to this day. I found that the Greek alphabet was a source of interesting words and ready-made logos! I settled on using the word ‘Lambda' and adapting the letter itself into the company logo.
Thanks to Ryan Stone, Lambda Films!
#14- A name that reflects the company's business
Trademarkia was chosen on a few fundamental ideas. We wanted to create a name that conveys a clear message. We felt that the name should hint at the services we intend to offer, thus ensuring that potential customers instantly grasp the essence of our business. This simplicity aids in brand recall, making it easier for customers to remember and share the name with others. In my opinion, opting for a name that inherently suggests the nature of your products and services is generally more effective, especially for new businesses.
Thanks to Raj Abhyanker, Trademarkia!
#15- Using unique names
I chose “Aroma Authority” as my business name to strike a balance between catching the audience's attention and maintaining a professional image within the fragrance niche. In an industry where many businesses adopt more artistic names, I wanted to differentiate myself. Additionally, this name aligns with my approach in the niche; I focus on delivering straightforward, informative content about fragrances, making it a true reflection of my business personality.
Thanks to Tabatha Farnel, Aroma Authority!
#16- Used a name that aligns with personality
I came up with my business name after a few iterations. It's nothing special, but it's descriptive. My current name, publicity, is my first initial plus what I do. Past names noted my industry but didn't feel like “me” and I'm the one providing publicity and media relations services. If the intent was to attract a wide audience, I'd love a creative business name, e.g. Yahoo!, or Google. With a couple of niches, I feel like gpublicity works.
Thanks to Gail Sideman, Gpublicity!
#17- Included key service
Selecting my business name, was a strategic choice driven by a clear understanding of my target audience: travel companies seeking SEO expertise. By incorporating the main keyword directly into the business name and domain name we will achieve easy name recognition and understanding of who we service and what we do. As we optimize my website and produce valuable content, we will secure a prominent position among top choices for Travel SEO services in the next few months. It'll tremendously help your website to have a great position on the search engines.
Thanks to Zoltan Fagyal, Travel SEO Pros!
#18- Including the company's core values
When I first ventured into the world of entrepreneurship, the process of choosing a business name was a pivotal moment. For me, “SocialSharings” emerged from a blend of my passion for social media and the idea of sharing valuable insights. I wanted a name that not only reflected our core mission – helping businesses share their stories effectively in the digital landscape – but also resonated with our commitment to fostering a sense of community and collaboration. The name “SocialSharings” symbolizes our dedication to empowering businesses to connect, engage, and thrive in the ever-evolving social media ecosystem.
Thanks to Daniyal Sanaullah, SocialSharings!
#19- Used generational trends
At the time, I saw electric bikes (e-bikes) as a relatively new and exciting product, and I was passionate about promoting eco-friendly transportation solutions. I believed that e-bikes were not just a trend but a generation in themselves, ready to take center stage, especially with the growing awareness of environmental sustainability. I felt that “eBike Generation” perfectly encapsulated the spirit of that moment. While the focus shifted, the name “eBike Generation” still embodies our commitment to innovative, eco-friendly transportation solutions.
Thanks to John Murphy, eBike Generation!
#20- Used wordplay
I absolutely loved the idea of calling my business Little Biz, as my services are focused on small and micro businesses. As the business name is a play on words, I have been able to have a lot of fun with my branding and marketing, but have also been able to extend the name for my different service offerings. They keep with the brand and business name whilst also letting potential clients know what these programs or services are – Little Biz Foundations, Little Biz Websites, Little Biz Nuggets, Little Biz Consulting, etc.
Thanks to Melissa Ahlquist, Little Biz!
#21- Using shorthand and catchy names
My name, Belinda Jane, (my friends call me BJ) presented a unique opportunity. I wanted a name that was simple and catchy, one that would effortlessly roll off the tongue and be easy for customers to remember. I sought a concise and recognizable title. Recognizing that we offered much more than just pajamas, we decided to go with the most widely searched term, “PJs,” which embodied comfort and relaxation. Thus, “BJ's PJ” was born, reflecting our commitment to providing high-quality, ethical, and sustainable slow fashion.
Thanks to Belinda Jane Keehn, BJ’s PJ’s!
#22- Using a name that reflects personality
To be true to myself I needed a brand that was professional but not too serious. Something that let who I really was shine through. To me, Big Sugary Dogue sounded warm, fuzzy, and jovial! Not to mention appealing to my notoriously sweet tooth. As for the dog part, I'm the kind of person who greets every dog I meet like my new best friend when I'm out for a walk, before remembering 10 minutes later they have humans at the end of their leashes I'm also supposed to interact with.
Thanks to Gareth Scurr, Big Sugary Dogue!
#23- Used a key location
As a South African now living in Australia it was important to me to keep a small reminder of my home country with me each and every day, so when I started my branding studio over two decades ago, I called it White River Design. White River is a small bush town nestled on the border of the world-famous Kruger National Park where most of my family still live. It also leads nicely into our purpose of changing lives one brand at a time as when we onboard a new client, we sponsor a child in our local area to be provided with education for an entire year through the Good Work Foundation.
Thanks to Debbie O'Connor, White River Design!
#24- Used keyword research
Our business name was derived from the fact that we wanted it to be simple and memorable. From a digital perspective, we wanted it also to include the main keywords that were being searched for online. Thus we did some keyword research to fully understand what keywords had the most search volume as well as checked the availability of the domain name in question. Lastly, we wanted a name we could easily trademark.
Thanks to Kayla Caruso, Music Lessons Australia!
#25- Naming after brand mascots
Choosing the name for my marketing consultancy, Fletch & Co., stems from a unique source of inspiration: my scruffy canine companion, Fletcher, who proudly holds the title of CEO (Canine Executive Officer). Fletch plays a significant role in our brand identity, participating actively in Zoom meetings, making appearances at in-person meetings (where possible), and often gracing the spotlight in our brand photography… he’s a crowd favorite with our clients.
Thanks to Jodi Duncan, Fletch & Co.!
#26- Blending words
The only way to acquire a domain of my choosing was to create a new word for my business. I went to a portmanteau (combining of words together to create a single combined word) website and experimented with a couple of iterations of what the core of my business was or how it was different and see what the results were and whether they resonated, were simple, etc. What made my business unique was that it was a group negotiation platform and after experimenting with synonyms of these words I landed on ‘Crowd' + ‘Haggle' which led to ‘Craggle'.
Thanks to Ben Baume, Craggle!
#27- Combining words with relevant meaning
The first step was choosing a name that reflected their values. “Bel” is derived from the Italian word “Bello,” meaning beautiful, and “Bagno” translates to bathroom. It was a perfect fit for a brand that aimed to create beautiful bathroom spaces. It is a brand that promises more than just functionality; it promises to make every bathroom space an elegant work of art. BelBagno's brand name is a testament to the power of choosing a name that resonates with our audience. It's more than just a word; it's a promise.
Thanks to Tim Karimi, BelBagno!
#28- Emphasized personal tastes in naming
I am often asked about how I came up with my business name, so happy to share. After travelling to Ireland and London and admiring the colourful doors I was keen to add a colourful front door to my home. The family wasn't so keen and we ended up with a practical black door. Months later when I was considering a business name, the idea of injecting some brightness and fun into the land of SEO, gave me the perfect opportunity to have my colored door dream come to life, and Yellow Door Digital was born, my office complete with a brightly colored Yellow office door.
Thanks to Kerri Bennett, Yellow Door Digital!
#29- Expressing values through names
“We train people because people are Assets!” The more detailed explanation of how our name came about is two-fold: Firstly, the greatest asset in any business is its people. Reputation can be gained or lost on product quality but more so by the service, skill, and efficiency of the staff that work in the business. Secondly, your knowledge and skills are what make you an asset to current/future employers as well as the colleagues, customers, suppliers, and others that you work with. All knowledge and skills are learned and then practiced; if you invest in your learning then you will increase your ‘asset’ value, hence our slogan “Knowledge is your greatest asset!”
Thanks to Brooke Shellback, Asset College!
#30- Building upon older names
It’s an abbreviation for my first-ever business. I started as a one-man business in the graphic design industry. I came up with the name Breadnbeyond, which is an abbreviation of Branding and Animation Designs. Meanwhile, Beyond is basically the commitment I made to give the final result that surpasses my clients’ expectations. Those two words combined make a roll-off-the-tongue name. Now, even though the service has changed and I have employees, I don’t do a rebranding– considering most of my clients are repeat clients and referrals, so I don’t want to confuse them.
Thanks to Andre Oentoro, Breadnbeyond!