Here are Three Common Naming Errors That Can Set Your Business Back—And How to Avoid Them

Not many entrepreneurs realise that all the effort they’ve put into developing their brand can be destroyed by one mistake, particularly one involving the brand name they choose. Undoubtedly, choosing an inappropriate brand name is among the worst things you can do to your company. 

This is because your brand’s personality is formed and shaped by your company name. Therefore, you must ensure your brand’s name appropriately conveys your business’s principles. 

The good news is that you can quickly choose a catchy name for your brand by using a brand name generator, name crowdsourcing, or brainstorming. 

But whichever naming strategy you use, be careful and steer clear of the following naming blunders that can easily damage the reputation of your business.  

  1. Easily Misunderstood Names 

Customers are more likely to purchase from a business if it shares similar political, cultural, and environmental views. And it’s no secret that the average person has strong opinions on delicate social topics and is likely to keep buying from a business that feels the same way. 

And although lots of entrepreneurs are embracing edgy marketing, if your company decides to focus on these issues, even if it’s in your company’s promotions or messaging like Gillette, you’ll eventually end up excluding a significant portion of your core audience because people who oppose the causes you actively support are always less likely to buy your goods or use your services. 

Avoid using names like ‘Spank Me Santa Lipstick,’ ‘Druggie,’ or ‘Pee Cola’ when choosing your brand or product names since they are likely to evoke negative images in the minds of your target audience. 

  1. Extremely Long Brand Names 

We urge businesses to avoid names like ‘WeAretheSuperlativeConspiracy,’ ‘Troglodyte Homunculus,’ ‘Aeropostale,’ and ‘Euymhod,’ as these words are unnecessarily difficult for the average customer to easily pronounce or remember when surfing the web.  

Picking a long or complex name will affect your brand’s referral because many customers will struggle to remember your company’s name, and that’ll affect whether they’ll recommend it to their friends and family. If you must pick a lengthy name, consider abbreviating it, like H&M, EOS, IBM, and 3M did. 

Make it your main priority to come up with short, distinctive, and memorable names for your company because 80% of customers forget about brand names within three days. Not to mention that short and unique names capture clients’ attention more quickly than long, intricate ones. 

  1. Weird Translations 

Establishing a captivating online presence for your company can allow customers from all over the world to contact and engage with your brand. Nevertheless, it has its downsides. Choosing a brand name with a different meaning in a foreign language is one of them.  

And that’s because if your company’s name is insulting in the local language of your target market, your potential clients will be reluctant to use your goods or services. This was demonstrated when two well-known products, Mazda’s Laputa and Nokia’s Lumia, were rejected by Spanish-speaking customers because their names, respectively, translated to ‘prostitute’ in Spanish. 

When searching for the best name for their company, business owners shouldn’t limit their linguistic research to just one language. Make sure you only choose a brand after conducting a comprehensive analysis across the main languages in the industry you’re aiming to penetrate as well as the key languages spoken around the world. 

Choosing a name with a pleasant translation will ensure that your selected name will be well-liked by your global customers.  

Prioritize Your Clients 

Companies that put profit front and centre instead of their audience soon lose customers because no one wants to do business with a company they believe is not interested in creating modern and unique solutions to their problems.  

The ideal method to position your brand is to choose a name that has been tested thoroughly, has positive connotations in the language of your target market and is easy to say and find online. If you pick a superb name, you won’t need to rename your business after a few years. 

Grant Polachek is the head of branding for, 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. 

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