Thinking about changing your business name? There are some important things to think about before you do!

A Bloomberg News report noted that of those companies changing their names, 52 % changed because of mergers or acquisitions and about 44 % wanted to better define themselves.

The PROS or the Good Reasons for Changing Your Business Name Include:

• A change of ownership

• Declining business. A fresh name and graphic look can jump-start a company – but not in and of itself. It must be accompanied by announced philosophical, directional, product (etc.) changes as well.

• Changing marketplace. When fried foods came to be regarded as unhealthful, Kentucky Fried Chicken changed to “KFC.” This enabled them to re-define themselves but still retain their fried product.

• Tarnished name and reputation.

• The current name no longer describe your company’s business model.

• A new name fits a new brand direction

• Garner attention from new clients and boost sales

• Energize and excite staff and current customers

• Provide an easy excuse for creative events & promotions

• Demonstrate longevity and a commitment to the future of your business

• Better define your products/services

Good or bad name symbol. Businessman turns wooden cubes and changes words ‘bad name’ to ‘good name’. Beautiful grey background, copy space. Business and good or bad name concept.

However, there are some serious considerations to a business name change that might be viewed as CONS:

• Giving up marketing equity

• Creating confusion in the market or with your current customers

• Can be a complex and expensive process (new collateral/signs/media buys/legal fees)

Before Changing Your Business Name:

Consider the reasons you wish to change your business name. Can the problem with your current name be solved through re-marketing?

Is the name you’ve chosen available to be trademarked or as a URL?

Is the name memorable? Test this rigorously with representatives of your various target markets.

Other Considerations: Can the new name be presented graphically, in an attractive, clear and interesting way? Does it work in social media -either in its entirety or short-cutted, say, for Twitter? How does the name work in a sentence? As a possessive? How does the name stack up against its competitors? Is it easily distinguished? Does it convey your unique message?

Yes-there are a lot of things to weigh when it comes to changing your business name. I recommend with an expert business or brand strategist who can help you answer these questions and make the best decision for your business and your brand!

For questions, contact me at murphy@brandstageconsulting.com

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