The startup story #1: choosing your startup name
The startup story #1: choosing your startup name

The startup story #1: choosing your startup name

Friday, 15 July 2016

Coming up with ideas for your startup is a fun process. Your creative mind overflows with great ideas and you can already see a bright future ahead of you and your startup. Once you have decided to become part of the brave group of ‘startup starters’, the true entrepreneur emerges and you’ll do anything to make it successful. Starting a startup also brings along some challenges that in your initial enthusiasm didn’t seem like much of an obstacle.

‘The startup story’ is a series of blog posts about the ins and outs of our startup journey.

In this blog our process of choosing a name for this startup is explained. I think many of us think choosing a name doesn’t seem like the most difficult task in a startup company, and to be fair that’s what I thought as well. When I joined this startup in May of this year and got the crash course on Transceptor Technology I was curious about the name choosing process.

I’ll recap it for you as quick as possible. Transceptor Technology was not Transceptor Technology when it was founded in March of 2014. For the first few weeks our name was an abbreviation of a long name I still can’t pronounce to this day. The four members of the team at that time were very ambitious, always looking for new challenges in the software world and incredibly dedicated to building this startup. To make a long story short, they decided to go right back to the drawing board to brainstorm since a more suitable name was needed.

After hearing the story I was curious as to how something cool like naming your startup can turn out to be quite a struggle. Research on the internet showed me a lot of startups are dealing with this issue, they have insecurities about their naming process and look for tips and help on forums. Insecurity about the naming of a startup was often expressed towards the future, in the form of ‘What if’ questions. It actually kind of surprised me that there were so many roadblocks in this process. The internet is a goldmine on this subject, there are lots of tips and tricks available since many ‘startup starters’ share this concern.

I learned that Transceptor Technology had its fair share of criteria set up before deciding on the official name. Assuming that the goal for every startup is the same, a positive image and spreading the word, we would like to share a few of our criteria with you (for a full list I would refer to the online forums). Fun fact: do you remember a certain song from the ‘90’s called ‘The Power’ by SNAP!? One of our team members, no names will be mentioned ;-) , was quite the fan back then. If you listen closely at the beginning of the song you might find out how Transceptor Technology ended up on our drawing board!

Availability:

When you think you have found the perfect name, always check if it is available. It would be a shame if you find out the domain name is already taken.

Stand out:

You will not turn heads if you go by a name that is commonly used, repetition is killing. In today's market your name should be refreshing, innovative and personal. More than ever is this the general view of startups and therefore living up to this standard can only benefit you.

Meaning:

This can be interpreted differently by a lot of people. Remember that it is your startup, you want to have a fun/cool story to tell in order to gain attention for your startup. Make it clear for yourself what this name means to you, this will make spreading the word easier.

Pronunciation:

Does the name sound nice and does it feel nice when you say it? That’s a plus, be careful that your name is no tongue twister.

Opinions:

Last but not least, after your team has spent many hours brainstorming a name, you’ve got a list of options (hopefully). Ask the people close to you what their opinions are on the names you’ve come up with.

There is definitely more to it than ‘just’ choosing a name. That is what I learned from my internet search and crash course back in May. All the information I looked up about this subject and the information that my team had about choosing the perfect name resulted in one conclusion. You can never be sure, we experienced this first hand. The only thing you can do is to be as certain as possible that you have covered all possible pitfalls. Your name (and logo / style) gives the first impression, a positive first impression affects the way people view your ‘brand’ positively.

Example:

Let’s see if we can make this more realistic. Think about it like this, everybody has their own taste. Now, if you see two shops / websites that offer the exact same product but with a different look and feel, your rational mind will think you are stuck between both, but your preference has already decided which one you like more. In your mind you have already chosen because you base your decisions on what your ‘taste’ likes best. This is your preference. This means that the shop or site that can attract most people’s preferences is the most successful.

Choosing your name, logo, blog titles, colors, all relates back to the message you try to spread for your startup. Building a basis that can create loyalty and a name that makes possible customers actually choose you is an important part. Uncertainty will always be present. Therefore the marketing trick is to stay close to yourself while trying to be as appealing as possible to the majority of your target group. Think of your startup like in the example, make sure they come to your company!

We sure hope to have achieved this with our name and style!