Any business owner can tell you that by the time you need to come up with a name, you’ve already done a ton of heavy lifting. Between filing as an LLC or LLP (or even a 501(c)(3)!) and getting your funds in order, the logistics can often become overwhelming. After spending hours on your core offerings and value proposition, you may be tempted to settle on just any name rather than pore over the endless possibilities. However, the importance of your brand identity can’t be overlooked.
Today, we’ll walk you through how we arrived at “Webconsuls” and give you some insider tips on naming your business, too.
Where’d You Get “Webconsuls?”
One of the most common questions from our clients and partners is, “What’s Webconsuls?” We thought it would be helpful to explain the history behind our brand name for you today.
In Europe, there are US Consulates, typically staffed with an appointed business “consul” to aid Americans who are working overseas. When our founder, Dennis Helfand, lived and worked in Denmark, he used to meet with them frequently. A consul focuses on making expats fluent in the local business and economic environments they’ll be working in, which improves their chances of financial success while abroad.
Webconsuls is a coined phrase Dennis Helfand developed, which simply means that we serve just as a consul does by assisting our clients as they work within the world wide web (what the internet was called in 1999, when the company was founded).
Names We’ve Been Called
We’re not sensitive when it comes to name-calling, because we’ve been called them all: web counsel, web console (think: comfort someone), web consoles (think: tables), webcouncil, webcounselors… the list goes on.
How to Pronounce Webconsuls:“web” is self-explanatory, and “consul” is /ˈkänsəl. Phonetically, you would say wehb-kahn-sulls.
5 Tips for Naming Your Business
It’s important to have a brand identity that stands out, directly explains your business goals, and applies to your industry. As you try to pin down the perfect name, don’t lose sight of these key principles.
- Your name should sound good out loud. In the digital age, you would be shocked by how many people choose outdated monikers cluttered with numbers and special characters. They file all the paperwork and buy their domain, but it isn’t until their first client call that they realize how difficult their lives are about to become. Simply put, clients aren’t going to feel confident contacting you if you’ve got a Web 2.0 name with y’s and asterisks. Moreover, it’ll be hard for them to search you later if it’s not spelled the way it sounds. Trust us – steer clear of exclamation marks, obscure words, and tongue twisters.
- Beware of initials and abbreviations. From an SEO standpoint, we don’t advise following in the footsteps of 3M and IBM. These companies have net worths in the billions, and don’t forget: they were founded before the competition of today’s search engine rankings. Initials don’t tell people about your business. Which brings us to point #3…
- Choose a name with meaning and benefit. Your name is the first impression that any potential investors or clients will see. Don’t waste that! Select something that indicates the industry you’re in and hints at the type of service you offer. You’ll definitely have an edge over the competition.
- Be sure you can secure the .com. Okay, this one is a digital marketing tip. Consumers associate .com domains with more established businesses, and they feel a little more skeptical about .co, .net, .org, and .biz across the board. They’re also not very trusting of the vanity extensions that have recently risen in popularity. Depending on your desired demographic, clients may not even know how to access anything but .coms. Even if the domain is already taken, most owners are willing to part with them.
- Be unique! Finally, we recommend that you do your due diligence when narrowing down name options. Search, search, search for competitors. Test your final few choices on Google AdWords to see how difficult it would be to rank for them. Be sure to check the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to see if you’ll be able to trademark your brand in the years to come. By taking these steps at the beginning, you’ll save yourself a ton of headache (and maybe some lawsuits) down the road.
Contact a Webconsuls Managing Partner at 949.701.4714 if you still need help pronouncing our name or assistance with (re)naming your business.