My maiden name is Alston. 

For several years, when I was considering starting a business, I played around with what I might name my company. I wanted to use versions of my maiden name, which I really love. So, I came up with all kinds of creations–All Stone, Red Stone (because red is my favorite color), and so many other things came to mind.

Red Stone Enterprises.  Red Stone International. Oooo…..I thought that sounded so good. I was going to use a ruby some kind of way in my logo. I just knew I was on to something. :-)

I think I was influenced by my dad in this area. His company, which focused on creating uniforms and paraphernalia for professional organizations, sports teams, and other associations and also had an “entertainment division” was called Alstar Productions. His logo was a heart with a rose going through it with his name David Lee Alston, Jr. above the heart and Alstar Productions underneath it.

I have since learned that choosing a “corporate” sounding name for my business as a small business entrepreneur or solopreneur is not a wise choice in today’s marketing climate.  So, I thought I would share what I have learned in my personal branding training with you.

Choosing a Name That Puts You Out There in a Big Way

The name of your business is so important. It can really catapult your marketing efforts in terms of personal branding. Having said that, I want you to keep in mind that we are talking about personal branding not corporate branding, so some of the things I am about to share may go against the grain of what you see and what you may think. I know it did when I first learned of it.

I want you to also remember that because we are in the 21st century, there will be things that were established prior to the revelation of this information that may have worked or may be working for gurus or well-known individuals that would not be as effective for you at this point in time.

So, let’s talk about your company name. There should be three goals to your company name:

  • To be remembered.
  • To be referred.
  • To be EASILY found.

That being said, your company name should be your name.

Yes, the company should be named after yourself.

Remember, we are in an age where the competition is fierce and you want to be remembered….yes, YOU. Having a corporate sounding name does not do that for you.

You may want to choose a Fortune 500-Sounding-Name because you think that it establishes credibility. But guess what?  Your name does not create credibility–your reputation, your delivery on your promise does.

As a service professional or small business entrepreneur (with big vision), you do yourself a disservice today when you give your business a name like Big Time Entertainment. Who is that?

But, if you use Jane Doe Entertainment, we know that no matter what goes down; this is Jane Doe’s’ company.

It is a name that we can easily remember, easily refer, and easily “Google.”

Including What You Do In Your Company Name

It is also very wise to include what you do in the name of your company. In other words, if you can describe what you do in a one-or-two word phrase, add it to your name.

For example:

  • Jane Doe Creative Services 
  • Jane Doe Chiropractic 
  • Jane Doe Tax Accounting and Preparation
  • Jane Doe Family Counseling 
  • Jane Doe Photography, and so forth and so on.

I know this goes against everything you have probably been thinking. You have been staying up all night trying to come up with something catchy or trying to sound so corporate, so important because that may have been what you believed to be the best thing to do.

Perhaps you have a company name now that you think is catchy. That’s fine. You can change it. Maya Angelou says, “When you know better, you do better.”  Enough said, right?

Think of all of the companies who have changed their names after having merged, even when people were used to the former name. The same will happen for you. Trust me. Changing your name will not be a problem. :-)

In terms of your marketing and branding naming the company after you….no matter what your name is, it is the best move in today’s business environment. And, I am sure you want to do what is best, not just what is good for you, right?

I am going to give you some examples of businesses, young and old, Fortune 500 and Inc. 500, multi-million dollar and billion dollar businesses that knew the power of this simple strategy and have become moguls in their industry:

  • The Walt Disney Company
  • Mary Kay
  • Ford
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • Schwab
  • Versace
  • Rolls-Royce
  • Prada
  • Dom Perignon
  • Mercedes-Benz
  • Rolex
  • Tyler Perry Studios
  • Suze Orman Financial Group
  • Brian Tracy International
  • Ali International
  • James Malinchak International, Inc.
(And it is even known that HARPO Productions, Inc. is OPRAH spelled backwards.) :-)

These are just a few.

Tips on Creating Your Company Name

Now, you may be saying, but I don’t like my name or my name is too hard to pronounce, etc. etc. I hear you. I would love to share some tips on various ways to create your company name, even if you and another person are in business together, but this blog would be just a tad bit too long. :-)

Never fear….You can hear them all on Tip #7 of 10 Things Your Ideal Clients Need You To Do–the free audio series in the Personal Branding Toolbox. Click here to get your FREE audio Series.


Personal Application

Your take away from this post is simple: No matter what you do, Small Business Entrepreneur with Big Vision, if you have a business that is 5 years young or less,  please name your company after yourself.

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Peace and Blessings,

Filed under: Attracting ClientsBusiness IssuesBusiness SuccessEntrepreneurshipInternet MarketingSmall Business Tips

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