Characteristics of the Best Names for Companies

By 100m
May 24, 2013
Reading Time: 2 minutes
Filed under Naming, Positioning

CharacteristicsoftheBestNamesA company’s name has a lot more to do with its success or failure than you might think. You only get one chance to make a first impression, and in most cases, your business’s first impression will be made when people hear its name. There’s no single method for figuring out the best name for your company, but a good place to start is looking at the characteristics that successful company names possess. Here are the four qualities that distinguish the best company names.


1. Rarity

There’s nothing worse than losing a customer because they get you confused with the competition. There’s almost always going to be someone else you’re competing with. Even if you’re doing something brand new, you’re competing for your customers’ time and attention. That’s why the best names for companies are different from the crowd of competitors around them. When choosing from a group, people are drawn to names that seem more creative and exciting than the others, so always try to one-up the competition. Studies have shown that shorter names are more memorable than longer ones, so finding a single word that expresses your vision is an especially good way to stand out.


2. Personality

The best company names are those that remember that customers and clients are people, and the best way to connect with people in a meaningful way is to stay human. Think of your company as a person, and decide what personality traits would make the customers you want to reach want to be friends with that person. Then look for a name that begins to express these traits. Another way to think about this is to choose a name that starts tells a story.


3. Focus

A lot of people make the company naming mistake of choosing something that tries to appeal to everyone. When you do this, you end up with company names that are broad, bland, and blah. Your company name cannot appeal to everyone. It needs to speak to your audience specifically. And you can’t be specific when you’re trying to talk to everyone. The best company names reflect a knowledge of the market they’re working in and express a compelling personality. If your name is focused and specific to that market, understanding what it means makes potential customers feel like they’re part of the in-crowd, making them more likely to relate.


4. Provocative

When we say the best names for companies are provocative, we don’t mean they are scandalous or even edgy (although sometimes edgy is exactly what you want). We simply mean that you need a name that gets a reaction. The best names for companies should make people think, or better yet, make them do something.


The best names for companies are those that find a way to harmonize these four traits in a unique way. If you need help finding the right name for your company, give us a call. At A Hundred Monkeys, our naming and branding specialists have years of experience in company naming. Take a look at some of our company naming projects here.