As a start-up, naming your product and your new company is an important pre-launch step. It usually won’t make or break a new business, but a good name can greatly increase your probability of success. I devoted several pages to naming conventions in my book, “Unlocking Your Entrepreneurial Potential”.
Here’s a quick summary. Characteristics of a good company name include:
1) Provides a mental image of your company and product. Ideally gives some hint of the product’s unique benefits. (Note: A start-up should always use the same name for their company and initial product line. This eliminates confusion and reduces promotional costs).
2) Sets you apart from your competitors and other similarly named companies. Check for trademark infringement and make sure your name is “search engine friendly”.
3) Should be short.
4) Should be easy to remember.
Shark Tank contestant names that I really like, and meet most of these criteria (btw, it’s impossible to meet them all!) include Onesole, Scrub Daddy, Wicked Good Cupcakes, Doorbot, and Soundbender.
Names that I don’t like so much include Slawsa, Fohawx, Track Days, Liddup, and Dura-Tent. It should be noted that a weak name does not doom a company to failure, but it can increase the probability of that undesirable outcome.
One of the contestants names I wasn’t crazy about was Remyxx, but I did like the company and its founder enough to give them a Gold Sharky Award for their performance on Shark Tank in Season 3. Here was my original review…..
Gold Sharky Award…….Gary from REMYXX
Gary showed great passion and composure during his presentation. His company sells sneakers that are completely recyclable.
Gary made a few tactical errors. First, he didn’t ask for enough money to get to the next level (only asked for $50K). Second, he had too many SKU’s (Stock Keeping Units) to become profitable in the short-term. He probably should have come in with 6 instead of 20 and expanded his product line after getting an investment.
Despite these errors, Gary got an offer from Daymond but had to give up 80% equity to get $50K. He accepted the offer and felt Daymond was the right partner for him.
(Note: When Gary and Daymond met some time after the show, they mutually decided a deal like this didn’t make sense for either of them).
Since the show, Gary has had some success, but progress has been a little slower than anticipated. Gary has made a decision to launch his 2014 line with a new name…. ReKixx. I think this is much better name…..easier to remember, more descriptive of his product, and more search engine friendly.
I recently spoke to Gary and asked him how he made this decision. He explained his thought process……