Corbett admits “it can be challenging to come up with a brand name when you first start your business. Its like being back at school and someone asking you what you want to be when you’re older and commiting to it from day 1.” Corbett goes onto say “but there are a couple of tricks of the trade I used when starting Eyetease. I had the benefit of working in a brand strategy consultancy which helped structure my ideas. But there really is no hard and fast rule. And the beauty is theres no right or wrong answer!”
To read the full interview between Virgin.com and Eyetease’s Founder, please read on and check out Richard Corbett’s top tips for creating the perfect name for your company!
Richard Corbett’s top tips for choosing a name for your start-up:
1. Be inspired. The more stimulus you are presented with in the outside world (and away from the computer!), the better chance you have to be inspired and select an awesome name for your business. Keep your eyes and ears open to inspiration and new ideas in the streets. Eyetease was a product of simply opening my bedroom window and seeing a “striptease” sign outside (I live in shorditch…there are a lot of these!). But, it gave me the inspiration I needed to create a unique brand name!
2. Keep your name to two syllables. Its no surprise that some of the world’s leading brands work to this unwritten rule: Vir-gin, Ap-ple, Face-book, e-bay, goo-gle, eye-tease, etc… When selecting a name for my tech company, I wanted a term which was short, sharp and to the point – Eyetease ticked those boxes for me!
3. Its brainstorm time! Running short of ideas? Draw a list (in 3 columns) of all the “benefits”, “features” and “emotions” your product/service creates. Then try to mix and match words to arrive at a unique combination or unique word. Try this a few times and then move onto point 4.
4. Get the .com to your name. If you have plans for international success, go for .com or go home. On the one hand this presents many restrictions when choosing a name. On the other hand, it provokes you to think more creatively and differently…so embrace the challenge!
5. Be unique and protect your IP. You can register the trademark to two elements of your brand: the logo (i.e. creative artwork) and the written word. The more unique your brand name is to the industry you’re in, the more likely you have a chance of registering it.
6. Future proof your brand. This is important. When creating the Eyetease brand, it was important to have a name that was “generic” and could be applied to other products and services (not just media technology). With a view to ultimately build an empire like Virgin, I took a lot of inspiration from Branson on this one. Virgin is an excellent name which implies being new and unexploited and (perhaps most importantly) is unique and very ‘naughty but nice’ – it grabs your attention! This is precisely what a brand needs to do! The brand challenged the previous more traditional corporate names in these industries, which were either the names of the founder(s) or boring and unsightly acronyms. What I also liked about ‘Virgin’ was its ability to be easily applied to different markets – e.g. Virgin Atlantic (Travel) and Virgin Mobile (Telecoms). When creating Eyetease, it was important for me to create a name which evoked a certain feeling, was unique and could be applied to any market. Basically, anything that “teases” your “eyes” is a good thing. – it’s a fun play on words but also has that little sprinkling of ‘naughty but nice’…much like my idol Richard Branson and “Virgin”.
7. Attach value to your Brand. Its worth having a think about what your company stands for. Your brand must emulate a core set of values in all points of communication with your customer. This should be clear in your written text, imagery, the tone of voice used, the subject matter, everything! Failure to do so will result in a very confused customer and a semi-unprofessional / half baked brand. Whether its twitter, facebook, a new advertising campaign on the streets of London or simply a meeting with you client – having a core set of brand values will help focus your efforts and maintain a consistent messaging. Your values should resonate with your customer but most importantly should be values you personally believe in and are passionate about. To ensure these brand values are kept up, its important to create an environment and culture within your team that attracts like minded people (who share these values) and presents opportunities for them to live the brand values in their day-to-day tasks.
Hope you all found this useful!
The Eyetease Team