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12 Unspoken Rules for Creating Catchy Business Names

Creating Catchy Business Names

A name that sticks is a name that will win. With so much competition in almost every industry, it is difficult for upcoming businesses to get recognized. Naming is one way to do that, as a catchy business name is unique and memorable for your customers.

Finding such a name is going to take a lot of brainstorming, research and perhaps even professional help. At the end, the payoff will be far greater than you would expect. Regardless of the type of venture, this step would ensure that you start off strong and build up your branding strategy from there. Name is the basic block, if you will, of any company’s branding strategy.

Here are 12 principles that will help you in crafting a catchy and irresistible business name:

Your Own Name May Not Be Catchy Enough

Choosing our own name for the company is the easiest way to find the name for your brand. And there is nothing wrong with it as there are many businesses, some extremely big and successful, that are named after their owner or even somebody else. However, the question here rises is it catchy enough? Unless your name is Lady Gaga or PweDiePie or something, your business might have to struggle to get recognized.

This type of name would give it a personal touch which might work well for a business with emotional connections like a bakery or a matchmaker. However, for other types of startup it just would not make for an attractive and memorable title.

Study Your Potential Customers

Does your intended audience and clientele even need a catchy name? Or if so will the names you are brainstorming resonate with them. Doing the right analysis of personas associated with your business is crucial in coming up with an alluring name.

You should know their genders, age group, demographics etc., to pick out some nouns and adjectives that are associated with them. These can provide you with a lot of playground in terms of choosing names for your business.

List down the qualities or values and use a thesaurus

Think about the quality of products or services your business will have and the values behind your business. These can help you find a path to that perfectly catchy name. A great way to go about it is to list down these qualities and look for synonyms for these words. You may come across a rather less used synonym that also sounds very nice. For instance, if your business is a cosmetic one then you could use words like ‘lustrous’ or ‘gleaming’ to represent shine.

Adjective-Noun Combo is smart

If you are wanting a more sophistically catchy title, an adjective and noun combination name would work the best. Such names are easy to figure out and market the quality and nature of your brand right in the name. Think of names like American Eagle, Forever 21 and Lonely Planet. These are made of very simple adjectives and nouns but sound very powerful and one can immediately guess what they are about.

A great way to find unique brand names containing adjectives is to put these words into a free business name generation tool like Namobot. It will give you hundreds of names to choose instantly. Finding a catchy name can be inevitably time consuming. This tool will help you find a unique and extremely alluring name for your new startup.

Gerund Verbs are simple yet fun

Verbs ending with -ing that are treated as nouns like playing, singing, eating etc. These can be great for a business name as they portray what you do and what you are through a single word. It can be quite fun if you can come up with the most properly defining gerund for your business idea. For example, a wedding planner with a name Ringing Bells sounds very straightforward yet attractive.

New combo words

You can form a new word yourself by combining two words. A lot of big businesses around the world have done that already. Look at Microsoft, KitchenAid, or Red Sox. Sometimes a part of the word can be replaced by another entirely different word because they have similar sounds. This type of combo is downright smart, cool and best way to show your eccentricity. For example, a coat designer could make their business name a bit funky by using the word barcode as BarCoat. It gets even better if the both the words are related to your business.

Wit is genius

Often times a witty or ironic name takes the cake and does very well with customers. Everyone likes a little bit of humor and if you have it right in your business label, it attracts people and they instantly want to know more about your business.

This type of name is the hardest to figure out and the riskiest to adopt. There could be different repercussions if there is even a tiny bit hint of sarcasm or offense to one person, group or industry. As long as it does not impose any unnecessary risk to your venture, a witty name is always welcome. How does a shake stand with a name ‘Get the Froth Out’ sound? Pretty cool right! Check out some hilarious brand names.

Alliteration and assonance can make your business sound catchy

Do you give attention to how the business name sounds? You should if you do not because part of the psychology behind making a name memorable relies on its sound. There is a practice called alliteration which follows repeating initial sounds, for example ‘Kiki’s Coffee.’ If the name has same starting alphabets then it gets even better like ‘Shirley Shirts.’

Assonance is very similar to alliteration which basically means to represent vowel sounds in words. The name would consist of words that have rhyming vowels, for example ‘Green Breeze.’ This also helps the name become common and easy to remember.

Nothing cuts it like Poetry

One of the most effective principles of making anything sound sweet and attention grabbing is rhyming. You can find rhyming words relevant to your business and make them sound poetic. The titles rhyme so they are easy to remember and stick in a person’s head when they first hear them. There are plethora of businesses with such names that are extremely popular.

The key is to find a rhyming adjective to go with the noun about your business. This is the best recipe for coming up with an instant hit in terms of business titles. Think of names like Snack Attack, Shake Shack, Dixie Chicks. It is fun, gets the message across and is hard to forget especially when combined with an equally fun logo.

Fantasy Names are cool

Your imagination will help you a lot when crafting a beguiling business name. Whatever your fantasy is be it a superhero or some scientific phenomenon, you can use it for startup. However, it has to be relevant too and preferably suitable enough for the potential customer persona. If you are obsessed with the solar system, you could name your business based on any of the planet or even the poor Pluto. Are you a diehard fan of any fictional character? Would that go well with your business and at the same time sound amazing?

Foreign words which are common

A good way to make an initial strong and memorable impression is to have a foreign name. This works out well for those who have a very common business like food, clothing, construction or web development. However, this is a very delicate area as you have to be careful about the popularity of the word. Noir sounds a lot more familiar than Schwarz and they both mean black in French and German respectively. Make sure your name des not just fly off the head of your potential customers.

Never forget to check if the name has been trademarked

While creating a catchy title is a serious mind labor but what is equally important is making sure your name is yours only. You need to run a search on any good search engine to see if a similar sounding business exists. Here is how you can do it in the US. If there is one already taken, sadly you will have to come up with a new one. Once you are sure the name is unique and untaken, get it trademarked for your business.


These tips or principles can help you immensely in crafting perhaps the catchiest name. The whole point is to standout even if your business idea is a trailblazer, people will hear your name first then what you do. You can brainstorm names yourself, take help from friends or use a name generator. Whatever you do, do not forget to apply these principles in order to find the catchiest name possible for your venture.

Published: October 24, 2017

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Charles Crawford

Charles Crawford is a high-level entrepreneur and co-founder of Keeva Organics. Charles has been studying internet marketing, web design, and tech start-ups for years, and he has been successful with multiple business ventures such as affiliate marketing (where 98%+ of people never make money). Follow him on twitter @ChazCrawford.

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