Choosing a name for your business can seem like a daunting task. However, if you plan ahead and choose a name for the future of your business, you can save yourself time and effort. One of the most difficult decisions that creative entrepreneurs struggle with when choosing a name is whether to name their company or brand after themselves. Before you name your company, think about your long-term goals for the business. Your long-term goals should help you determine how you name your brand. Do you want to be a small one-man shop? Do you want to be a multi-national corporation? Most business owners want to be somewhere in the middle.
If you plan to own a small art shop where you produce all of the merchandise yourself, it's probably fine to use your own name for your business and might even be beneficial. You can begin building your personal brand immediately as you build your professional brand and reputation. Even if you ultimately want or need to hire on some support staff, they can act on your behalf as an extension of your personal and professional brand.
If you plan to own a global corporation, you should probably choose another name. Most large companies are not named after their founder these days. If you truly want to scale your company in this way, choose a name that does not relate to your size. For example, use the name of the nearest large city or region vs. the name of your small suburb if you want to select a location-based name.
If you own a product company, you should also choose a name other than your own for your brand, especially if you hope to be picked up by large retailers. You might even want to do some market research about customer preferences before you select your name if national retail is your goal. A bad name will not necessarily hold you back if your products are great, but a good name may put you ahead of the competition.
When you own a small service agency where you do not do all of the work yourself but you direct the team yourself, you might still want to choose something other than your own name as the name for your business. Many small business owners find that a separate business name gives them the credibility needed to take on larger clients and the ability to build a professional brand that is separate from their own personal brand. This may not be the case for you, but if you need that legitimacy to get in the right mindset, start with a strong name.
If you already have a name in mind and would like feedback, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.