Lately, Your Executive Secretary has been working with others as they either go through a Branding or Rebranding exercise.
It made me think about the importance of getting your Branding right at the start of your business. In my opinion it is critical to take some time to really think about your company name and/or brand. It is important to remember that every time you communicate with someone on behalf of your business, on or offline, you are effectively creating, recreating, shaping and reshaping your brand. This is the first in a series of Blogs where I look at Marketing Your Business.
Recently lots of people, have told me they love the Your Executive Secretary branding, this pleased me a lot as they didn’t say they loved the name but the brand. So I thought it might be quite nice to share with you how the Your Executive Secretary business got its name and ultimately its brand.
These are the questions, I asked myself in creating Your Executive Secretary and you might find them helpful in either the Branding or Rebranding of your Business. For me, I always had the vision of the end state but the journey to achieve the right name and branding felt as if it took forever! These questions were created for setting up a Virtual Assistant business, but are applicable for any type of business.
- Do you want your business to have a personal name?
- Do you want your business to have a meaningful name?
- Do you want a brand rather than a name?
- Choose a name that will appeal to your target market.
- Do not use Limited or any other Business Legal status in your name, unless your business is legally trading as that type of business.
- Ensure that the names you consider do not have any sensitive words, or expressions or imply a connection with government.
Longevity of the Business
- How do you want the business to grow?
- Do you intend on selling the business in years to come?
- If you use fashionable words in your business name – will it still mean something in years to come?
- If you use geographic location in your business name are you limiting your client base (or depending on business you may find this is appropriate for your type of business)?
- Is the name you choose pronounceable by others?
- Is the name really hard to spell and therefore others will struggle to type into a search engine on the www?
- Stay away from slang, jargon, intentional misspellings – you need people to be able to find your business.
- Can the name of your business be split down into acronyms – are those acronyms offensive?
Domain Names available
- Is the domain name available?
- Do you want the .co.uk or the .com or the .eu (etc) version? Is one version available but not another? Where will you be targeting clients from are they likely to put the correct URL extension in when searching for your business?
- Do you want to be a Sole Trader, Limited Company, Partnership etc?
- Check with Companies House whether the name you are choosing is different to those already on the Index at Companies House.
Images and Logo
- Does your business name / brand lead to a logo?
- Do you need to patent your name / brand / logo / products etc
Creation of a Mission Statement.
- What stands you out from the other businesses delivering the same type of products or services?
When choosing a name, be careful not to pigeon hole yourself; in my brain storming efforts, I considered things like using my initials or my name and my geographic location in my business name but the reality is, this curtails the longevity and reach of the business. My initials and name (although lovely Mum) doesn’t make for a pretty memorable business name, nor does it allow me to expand the business or sell it on as a brand in years to come.
So regardless of whether you are Branding or Rebranding you business, once you have some name ideas, test them out on friends, family, potential clients, ask others for their opinions. This is the part of the journey, I found really hard, depending on the background of the person I asked, tended to skew the responses they gave. In the end, I sat down with a blank piece of paper (at 0400 one morning as the lack of an appropriate name was keeping me awake at night) and asked myself, what it really was I wanted to be to a client and brainstormed the ideas that developed, but using the 8 key questions above to guide me – this is how Your Executive Secretary gained its name.
I would love to know either in the Comments section below or on Twitter, how you came about the name of your business, any hints, tips, that you might like to share with others on Branding or Rebranding your business.
Or if you are looking for someone independent to help you with your Branding or Rebranding of your Business, then please give me Amanda a call on Freephone: 0800 612 5596 to arrange a no obligation chat.