Naming your company in 2016?

 Here Are A few Considerations Tailor-Made For 2016.


Coming up with a brandable domain name that rolls off the tongue, sticks in the brain, and isn’t already taken is difficult enough without throwing an additional wrench in the machine – but we’re doing it anyways.


So, just what is this naming criteria?  Let’s call it “2016 fit.”


While the traditional criteria for naming your company still hold true, there are additional considerations to be made in the digital age.


Social Media Viability


Love it or hate it, first up is social media viability.  Every day, new social platforms are cropping up and falling down, and while the passing fads can be ignored, it’s important to take note of when a wave is about to crest and hop on board.


In these cases, or in the case of old standbys like Twitter and Facebook, it’s important to make sure that your company name is going to fulfill a few distinct criteria:


  1. Your brand name is within the character limit of major platforms.  For example, Twitter only allows 15 characters.  If your name is longer than that, you’re going to have to have to mangle it to make it fit.
  2. Your brand name doesn’t include characters not allowed on target platforms.  Special characters might be nice for stylistic flair, but they do little to help keep your brand usernames uniform across multiple platforms.


Notice how we didn’t include availability?  In general, you can circumvent a taken username by adding “Official” or something to its ending.  If that’s taking up too many characters, try just adding “HQ” to the end instead.


The Standout Factor

There’s an ongoing debate over the use of already known words and completely made up ones to help with memorability.  In this day and age, millennials are becoming a larger and larger percentage of any brand’s target market, and this younger demographic tends to respect the creative tendencies that lead to more unique naming schemes.

Brands using parts of real words or made completely made up monikers may have a leg up here, as exemplified by recent rapid growth brands like Trello and Canva.

Of course, your own audience may give you some indication of where you should end up here.  For example, a largely older audience might appreciate a more formal name.  Even so, consider something with a bit of flair as younger demographics age into your target audience down the road.

Social Associations


Love it or hate it, words take on new meanings over time, and we live in a time where the wrong impression being made might mean a blunder being retweeted out 1,000 times in half an hour and leading to a massive PR burn.  For better or for worse, upcoming generations are more socially sensitive than their peers, and it’s a trend that may hit critical mass in 2016.


When choosing a name, check through sites like Urban Dictionary and do a deep audit of any current search results popping up on Google for the word (or words) to make sure you aren’t about to name your company after an embarrassing bit of online slang that puts an unwelcome spin on your brand.


Ultimately, your name is your own, but don’t forget to build a company with respect to the context it exists in.  In 2016, that may mean a few considerations you’ve never grappled with before.