with Aliza Sherman
If you own a business - home-based or otherwise - this is the blog where you'll find practical tips and smart ideas about entrepreneurship. I've started and run 4 different businesses so "been there, done that." I'll also invite successful entrepreneurs to share their best advice with you.
To learn more about Aliza, check out her profile on Work It, Mom! and her website, www.mediaegg.com.
Coming up with a name for your new company can be tough. Do you use your own name such as Aliza Sherman and Associates, adding the “Associates” part even though you are only a company of one just so you sound bigger? Do you come up with a strange new word for your name like “Azila Multimedia.” which is Aliza spelled backwords, by the way. And with the Web being so essential to your overall brand, finding a domain name that isn’t yet taken is a challenge.
I thought I’d share how I came up with my business names over the years and also include anecdotes from other women about how they named their businesses. Also check out this previous post that includes some tips on naming your business.
Cybergrrl, Inc. - When I put up my first Web site in January 1995, I didn’t want to include a photo of myself so drew a little cartoon version of me. Then I put a hot pink cape on her and called her “Cybergrrl.” I first tried “Cyberwoman” but didn’t think it had a ring to it. And “Cybergirl” sounded too young. I thought “Cybergrrl” with 2 r’s had attitude. My company’s original name was Cybergrrl Internet Media, but I referred to it as CGIM because I thought people wouldn’t take “Cybergrrl” seriously. Eventually, once people knew the Cybergrrl name, it quickly gained popularity so by the time we incorporated the business, I was no longer hesitant to use it.
eViva.net - This was a Web site for Latina professionals but was about work and life. Viva means “life” in Spanish. We put the “e” in front of it to signify “electronic” as in the Internet and technology. And we kept the “.net” in the name because we couldn’t get the “.com” so it was important that people knew how to find us. Plus we considered our site a network for women so “.net” actually worked well for us.
Mediaegg - I still have Mediaegg as my alternate web site name because I think people find my name hard to remember and spell. I came up with this name because I’m in media production of all kinds - both online and offline - and “egg” referenced the creation of something - the beginning of an idea, for example.
Big Horn Marketing - I’ve always talked about the importance of self promotion, particularly for sole practitioners. You are the brand. You have to market loudly and carry a big horn. Hence the Big Horn in my marketing company’s name. Of course, there was a double meaning because I was living in Wyoming at the time where big horn sheep are prevalent, however, I didn’t want to use a sheep as my logo. Instead, I used…a horn.
Moonbow Productions, Inc. - My husband and I made long lists of potential names for this company, thinking of all the words and imagery we wanted to evoke. Outdoors. Magical in some way. Something with spirit. Then a friend mentioned a moonbow. I had no idea anything like that existed but looked it up on the Internet. Sure enough, a moonbow is a rainbow that occurs at night by the light of the moon, usually by a waterfall. My husband and I agreed that the name had that mysterious, magical connotation that we wanted and upon doing a trademark search, there were no other companies with a similar name doing what we were doing so we chose it and trademarked it.
Here are some other women business owners who shared the meaning behind their company names:
Title: President and Chief Person in Charge
Company name: mousewords
How She Came Up With The Name: In ‘mousewords,’ the ‘mouse’ comes from a combination of a nickname, Robbie Burns’ poem “To a Mouse,” and the computer mouse, which is the tool I use in a great deal of my business. The ‘words’ comes from my being a writer. I went for all lower-case to emphasize the diminutive qualities of a mousie, which I now hide in all my artwork.
Company Name: Small Biz Survival
How She Came Up With The Name: Small Biz Survival came from working out the right term for trying to revitalize the small towns of rural America. My grantwriting/city admin business is called McCray and Associates. Picked because I work with other independent pros, and because it was a business name my husband used to use for his welding business!
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