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Why Brand Name is Important for Start-Ups ?

Why Brand Name is Important for Start-Ups ?
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You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Building a brand takes years of strategizing, planning, and money; a fact some of the biggest brands in the world would easily confirm. Steve Jobs named his hardware and software company Apple in the midst of his ‘Fruitarian diet’ because it sounded simple, fun, spirited and not intimidating. The rest, of course, is history! Coming to brands like Google, Facebook or Skype, we almost use them in our everyday conversations as verbs. Such incredible brand recall is an ultimate compliment for any company, demonstrating a personal connection between them and the consumer. For a new-age business, a nifty logo and a catchy name around its product become equally crucial to creating an impact and evoking strong passion among consumers in the long run.

In this era of unlimited choices, a startup is required to build a brand that is consistent, memorable and differentiated to captivate consumers and eventually capture mind share. However, there is no instruction manual for building a brand. Brand position and reputation are built slowly and earned over a period of time, and the process takes years. Emerging startups can, however, look to a few key aspects to ensure a great brand recall, salience and reputation over the years.

The name is the first thing that people hear when you tell them about your company. Good brand names are seldom arbitrary.  They are carefully curated ambassadors of a brand personality that convey its position, tone, and values.  As much as a good brand name points out the maturity and relevance of a startup, a name lacking in vision, attention to detail, and creativity can be severely detrimental to a company’s image in front of consumers as well as potential investors. The name is also a way to create an emotional connect with consumers, therefore, it should be something that appeals to their sensibilities and something they’d like to be associated with for times to come. 

Good names, like good logos, evoke a strong passion for your brand, while bad names elicit distaste or worse still, indifference. A great brand name can be a solid competitive advantage for your company, especially when feature sets between two or more brands are roughly the same. A brand’s value is what it offers its customers and what it promises to do for them in the long run and must convey its uniqueness in a way that the customer is drawn to use it just by the mention of its name. Iconic global brands like Mercedes-Benz with its 3 pointed star, Ferrari with its prancing horse can be cited as perfect examples when it comes to logos distinguishing a brand.  While the Mercedes emblem represents the automaker's drive towards universal motorization with its engines dominating the land, sea, and air,.It is equally imperative to come up with a catchy and impressive tagline that is both meaningful and concisely indicative of the essence of your product or service. The tagline further elaborates on what the company does and complements the message being communicated through the brand name.

The next most important thing to do is to acquire a domain name. It is generally easier to acquire domain names for made-up words rather than for actual words. So, selecting a brand name requires a certain amount of creativity and word-play so that it is unique, but isn’t ambiguous and easily communicates what your brand is about.

Once you decide on a name for your company and zero in on a domain name as well, you need to design a logo that complements your brand name and personality. Your logo is the first visual a consumer gets about your company, so the question you need to ask before designing the logo is what it visually represents about your business? The use of colour is very important to give your logo a positive tone. Colours are the most recognisable element of a brand’s logo and are the most effective way to create brand recall and recognition.

The communication, name, and logo, must altogether tell a story that your investors can believe and trust in to provide you with solid sustenance to build and cultivate your brand. It will not only instil a sense of belonging and pride among the employees associated with it, they will further act as live brand ambassadors for the company.New-age startups can take a cue from Indian ride-sharing company Orahi that has a logo designed as a wheel representing five like-minded people standing together in a circle to symbolise the ride-sharing community.

A carefully crafted branding strategy can go a long way in etching a solid identity for a new venture and can define its success. Whether it is a brand name, symbol, word, sentence or logo each and every element has the potential to create a cohesive brand personality that consumers not only remember but also take pride in being associated with.  

 
Edition: April 2017

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