When it comes to a Brand Identity your name is everything.
Shakespeare may have asked, “What’s in a name?” and postulated that it didn’t matter. That a rose would smell as sweet no matter what it was labeled.
But, in business a name is the foundation of your brand, of your brand identity. It’s the single-most important clue as to what your brand image will look like. Your name helps you connect with your prospects and customers. Obviously, your name is what gives you brand recognition.
So how do you create a good one? And what do you if you are a direct seller or representative for a company? Do you need a brand identity?
There are two basic kinds of names: persona or personal brand. A persona is a descriptive name that encapsulates the essence of who you are and what you do. A personal brand is your own name.
Now there is hot debate about which one is better, but it comes down to your personal preference and what works best for your business. What are you most excited about? To me, names based on a persona offer a lot more room for creativity when designing. Words are pictures and when you find a good word, you can turn it into a memorable graphic that will help distinguish you in a crowded marketplace. That is indeed an effective brand identity!
You can find clues for your business name–your brand identity–in your own personality, in your mission statement, or Unique Selling Proposition. Just make sure it resonates with others and that it is memorable and not too hard to understand!
A persona name can also be based on keywords. I know for one business I helped start, we used this method. We had to do very little marketing to make our first sales because of this strategy. Our market found us! Now that was a successful brand identity!
Bloggers, coaches, writers, and artists often choose to have a personal name brand. They want people to be able to search their name to find them on the Internet. Of course, for this strategy you have to do a lot of brand building so your audience recognizes your name and knows what you do.
A combination of the two works very well in this Internet age. The great advantage we have as small business owners is that we can come out from behind the curtain. We don’t have to be faceless corporations that are impersonal and dehumanizing. Because people want to do business with people whom they like, know, and trust. So when you add your name and photograph to your marketing platforms you are going to be building that trust and likeability. That is the best way to use a brand identity!
And what if you are a direct seller or a rep? You need to think about having a brand identity also! If you are in a health market, you might consider branding yourself as a wellness coach and coming up with a memorable name that conveys that. Or you can use your own name.
Why is this important? Because you never know when your interests will change, what will change with your company, or if you will want to broaden your offerings. If you have a brand, you can build customers for a lifetime. So that if the company goes bankrupt (it happens) or you switch companies or you want to get into creating your own products, you have the flexibility. You already have a built-in customer base and you don’t have to start from scratch!
Create a memorable name for your brand identity and you will create a brand identity that is successful!