There are about 120 million companies currently active in the world. 120 million. How on earth is anyone supposed to stand out? I’ve never run a business, so who am I to talk? However, as a consumer, one thing I’ve recently noticed is how important the name of something is.
I guess it was easier to name a company many moons ago. All you needed was a something memorable enough to spread the neighbourhood, let alone the city. But in 2018, with access to every kind of service, in every corner of the world, how can anyone be original?
Something I’ve become aware of recently is actually in all of us. Have you noticed how quick we are to shorten a word? Festival to fest, underground to tube. Weatherspoons to Spoons, fabulous to fab. Even Mcdonalds referred to themselves as ‘Maccies’ in their latest ad, after research showed that Maccies is intact what many of us can’t help but call it.
As we know the brain does in other aspects of life, it even tries to find shortcuts when it comes to language. Long names aren’t bad. Computer giants Hewlett Packard still use their full name, but for customer sanity (and logo design) HP rings much better for every day. But something to consider is that, even if you come up with a beautiful, long, sophisticated name, you must expect people to shorten it. And if you can shorten it, could that itself be a better name? Even pop stars know it; Cher, Beyonce, Eminem.
It’s easier for us to recall something small. And there are some companies that have not only cracked a short name, but also an original one. The creator of Lego chose this because it was only four letters, yet also sounded like nothing else. Uber is another name that works a treat. And Topshop. Because you don’t even need to shorten them. They have one name, and one name only. Easy to say, easy to translate, easy to type.