"What’s In a" Series: Naming Your Company
You have your idea. You have your vision. You know all the steps that’ll get you to your launch, but there’s one super critical element missing - you need a name. How are you going to identify your brand? This can be the most brain racking and frustrating part of starting your own company.
When we started Highlo Designs a few years ago, we were very much so in same shoes as many of our clients. We had everything lined up and ready to be put into motion. The only thing holding us back was the name. There were abbreviations, initials, animals, mountain town clichés, etc. Regardless of how many options we came up with, nothing seemed to really fit. Frustration started to set in as everything was being held up by the name.
So instead of continuing to bang our heads against the wall, we decided to take a step back and only considered three things: what captures the personality of our studio, what captures the purpose of our studio, and does it hold significance for us.
So what’s in a name?
The name helps capture and express the brand’s personality. Is your brand going to professional but relaxed? Is it going to high minded and exclusive? Is it going to be down to earth and inviting? Is it playful or serious or both?
Highlo, being a made up word, is fun, light, creative and unique. In our case, it is a direct extension of both us.
As your thinking of names, keep in mind the personality of your brand and see if the name and personality work together.
What does your brand do? What industry is it in? Where is it located? Does the name evoke the response you desire?
Highlo’s full name is Highlo Designs, LLC. Sounds so official, doesn’t it ;) But from it, you get an idea of what kind of products or services we offer and it speaks to the high and lower elevation of the mountains in Park City. Names can be a bit more abstract or very literal. We opted for a bit of both because we knew that a name too abstract would require more effort into conveying the purpose, and too literal of a name runs the chance of blending in.
Now, we are not saying that if you do either, you have made the biggest mistake ever. You just have to determine which direction is the right fit for you, what you’re doing and who you’re doing it for.
Whether you just want to have you own thing or have a global vision, be sure there’s some meaning behind it.
Highlo has meaning for us. After taking the step back and considering these three points, Liz was reminded of an book she read a while before which was an allegory centered around the theme of the journey from the valleys to the peaks. The story painted that throughout the journey, there will be stumbles, victories, exhaustion, excitement (and more), but through it all, staying steadfast and learning as you journey towards the higher places.
As we talked about it, we realized this was an idea that we both value in life and wanted to exemplify in our business. That merged with also being in the mountains, we thought it was a fitting direction for a name. We merged the ‘high’ + ‘low’, dropped the ‘w’ and Highlo Designs was born. It’s a made up word that has that has meaning and significance to us.
To sum it all up, there is plenty of stuff out there about the do’s and don’t’s when it comes to naming your brand, but there’s no need to limit yourself. It’s your brand - have fun with it as you figure out a name for YOUR business that has personality, purpose and meaning :)