Step #1 in Starting A Business

 

Cowgirls starting a businessThe Name Game: Naming A New Biz

I’m good and I’m bad! Being a serial entrepreneur, I’ve started many businesses and chosen for them good names, crazy names and I-wouldn’t-do-that-again names! My specialty food company that started with a $1000 investment and grew to be 7 million+ was named Buckeye Beans and Herbs. The name was a little crazy, but intriguing enough to work. We built the company on the idea of a great product that we marketed in totally crazy ways!

Being addicted to mud from a very early age, I naturally became a potter and my ClayFox Pottery was named to reflect the craftiness of the gray fox playing in clay. I think I must have considered myself “foxier” in those younger days too! The name stuck, I still make lots of pots and many galleries are nice enough to sell them.

I said “horse” before mama and dada left my baby lips. Horses have always been my passion, wonderment and teachers. I am sure they have taught me more about interactions, communication, leadership and relationship than any business class could ever hope to.

But I blew my horse business name!!

Krisean Performance Horses came from the hope that if I could raise foals that turned out as well as my two kids, I would be successful in the horse breeding world……so I combined the wonder kids names, Krisha and Sean, into Krisean. Well no one can pronounce it, remember it or spell it into their Google searcher. But then something MUST have worked with the name as I have indeed bred and raised amazing foals and with the 350 unique visitors to my web site each week, sold those foals all over the US and Canada!

So as this new enterprise grew with my partners, THE Cowgirl and the Cowgirl Gardener, looked like a sure shootin’ good idea, we needed a name for our business adventure. Time to do name research, develop a plan, test it, rehash it, follow the name-your-business rules and succeed.

Cowgirls by nature are tenacious, resourceful and creative. Being the original networkers, they have always found success by coordinating and cooperating with other cowgirls. THE Cowgirl who seems to have a create-a-name-brain immediately called us the Cowgirl Co-op.

 

Being a closet corporate executive, I ran this off-the-top-of-her-head name past many of my corporate women friends. To a woman they said…..ohhhhh, I want to be in the cowgirl club! Can I play?! Well if that wasn’t a name endorsement I don’t know what it was so…………we are The Cowgirl Co-op!

Lesson To Learn: Naming a business today is a horrendous task what with so many URLS already goobbled up (that’s a combination word of gobbled and Googled). If you can’t attach a URL to your name that leads to at least a one page website about your business…you are already behind in the business game. Do your naming homework.

Research and learn the naming rules first. You will find that breaking the rules because you didn’t know about them is foolhardy. But, knowing the rules and breaking them because you’re comfortable playing out side the box is a completely different rodeo!

Cowgirl Business Naming Rules:

Do:

  • Choose an intriguing name that says “something” about what you are selling
  • Do your legal homework and make sure someone else didn’t like that name first!
    • Here is the link to check to see if the new name is already trademarked by someone http://www.uspto.gov/trademarks/index.jsp Go to Search Marks and then New User Form Search (Basic) This is only a starting place, it doesn’t guarantee the name isn’t in use.
    • Check your state government site to see if you can register your name in your state. For example in WA state you would go to the Secretary of State site at http://www.sos.wa.gov/corps/ and look under Search Corporations
    • State wide business help from the big guys at THE GOV: http://www.business.gov/register/business-name/naming.html
  • Keep in mind that your name should be easy to spell, easy to pronounce and memorable
  • Make sure you can attach some URL to the name and the URL is available
  • Set a deadline to get the “Name Game” done or you could go on forever…..thinking!

 

Don’t:

  • Grab the first name that enters your head (heh, heh easy for us to say!)
  • Use an embarrassing name or initials of your name that spell something rude
  • Use a name that is legally used by someone less
  • Chose a name that is way toooo long or hard to pronounce
  • Think naming a new company is easy!

More Help: Other good on line suggestions for naming a business

 

Entrepreneur  On Line: http://www.entrepreneur.com/startingabusiness/startupbasics/namingyourbusiness/article70574.html

Suite 101.com: http://marketingpr.suite101.com/article.cfm/naming_a_new_small_business

About.com http://entrepreneurs.about.com/cs/gettingstarted/ht/business_name.htm

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You could add some biographical info about yourself here as well as links to your facebook page.

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