I just got back from an amazing 4 days with Ali Brown and her Millionaire Protege Club, where I served as one of 8 Mastermind Leaders for Ali during our fall retreat. So right now my brain is buzzing with hundreds of ideas and follow-ups. But I wanted to stop and write about what you name your business, because that topic came up quite a bit in two of the masterminding sessions I was in – one I facilitated, one I sat in on.
When we go into business as an entrepreneur, working for ourselves, we have a great deal of ego invested. After all, you can't even have the thought of building your own business without a pretty strong ego, right? So it's not a bad thing. On the other hand, if we name our business on what is meaningful to us there's a good chance it won't be meaningful to our customers. So here are a few tips.
- Try to work it out so that the keywords people search on to find your business are in your business name. As an example, let's say your business name is Phoebe Dogstone and your website is www.phobedogstone.com. Hmmm…does that give a customer a clue what you are about? The only way someone will specifically search that URL is if they already know you – they'll never search on that name to find what they are looking for. So weave a keyword in there to help your business out. try Phoebe Dogstone, Children's Hair Stylist. Even better, think about whether you need to brand to your name. If not, consider naming your business Haircuts for Kids and using the URL www.haircutsforkids.com. Tie that to some SEO for your geographical location and you're in business.
- Be open to changing your business name if you test it out and people don't know what it means. The name needs to call to your potential customers (prospects) rather than satisfy your own ego. You can test this by rounding up 5 to 7 people, telling them your business's name, and asking them if that conveys what you do. If you get mostly blank stares you'll know you have a problem. Rebranding is definitely effort, but it can pay off with many more customers because you become easily findable on the Internet, and because people reading your business card get a clue from it what you do.
- Use a tag line for your business that expands on the name, uses another keyword, and says something about a problem that you solve. Using Haircuts for Kids as an example, you could craft a tagline that said something like “stress-free hair cuts for toddlers.” Now people know exactly who you serve and what you bring to the table – you know how to cut active toddlers' hair.
The point is, give yourself every help you can by carefully considering your business name from the customer's point of view. It's what they react to that counts the most – not a name that you're refusing to let go of because it speaks to you.
I'll have more from the MPC retreat over the next few weeks. Meanwhile, go think about what your business name does (or doesn't do) for your business.