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Naming Your Business | How To Know When It's Time For a New Name

Brand Strategy
min read
In this article

A big part of your brand is your name - so how do you know when it might be time to change it? 

Changing brand names is a hot topic here at Maker & Moxie right now, which is my own freshly-launched name! It’s something that comes up for most of us one way or another, whether you’ve changed your name before, thought about changing it, or if it’s something that comes up for you one day down the line. 

Maybe you have a feeling that your business name isn’t right and you think it could be better. Maybe there’s something else that feels problematic in your brand. Whatever the situation, I want to show you how to tell when the time is right for a brand spankin’ new name!

The Business Reasons For Changing Your Name

1. Your business has changed

If something in your business has changed, such as your products or services, it might be time for a new name.

One of the reasons I decided to change my name is because I’m no longer doing what I was doing when I started my business. I started my business as a hand lettering and typography artist and designer. As a studio producing mostly black and white art, I named it Black & White Studios - a very simple, quick, easy name! That was 4 years ago and I’m no longer doing that anymore, so the name doesn’t represent who I am or what I’m doing anymore. 

2. Your industry has changed

Similarly to how your business can change, your industry can also change. If you were a designer and now do consulting, then your industry has changed and you might need to change your business name. For example, in my business I’m not a designer anymore, I’m a strategist and a coach, so the industry I’m in is now different. 

It can also be a change in the people that you serve within that industry. It may be that you once served everybody and now serve a very niche group of people, or even have completely changed the niche of people that you serve or sell your work to. 

3. Your location has changed

If you change the location of your business or go global, especially if your name is related to your location, then this might be a good time to change it. 

Let’s say my business name was ‘Hollie Arnett Design Wellington’. If I was moving location or trying to reach people in different cities or countries, then changing my name would be a good way to let people know that I don’t only work in that place and that I’m open to working with people in other locations. 

These are the 3 practical reasons why you might change your business name - when you’re doing a different thing in a different place for different people. 

The Branding Reasons For Changing Your Name

From a branding point of view, there are other more intangible, feelings-based and messaging-related reasons why you might change your name. 

1. It’s not clear 

Your brand name is unclear or confusing, and doesn’t really say anything about what it means, what it is or who you are

2. It’s not memorable or recognisable 

In this case, people might forget your name or find it hard to recognise, hard to say or hard to remember. 

3. It’s generic

If your name is too generic or average, then it doesn’t say anything specific and doesn’t convey any sense of meaning or feeling. You may end up confused with someone else, like I have! With my old branding, I often was tagged in things related to black and white photography, which has nothing to do with what I do. It’s not ideal to get looped in with other things so it’s a good reason to change your name. 

4. It doesn’t align with your vision

If you have a vision for where you want to go, then your brand name needs to align with that. Your name needs to make sense for the vision that you have, the future that you want and the position that you want to have. For example, if you want to move from solo freelancing to a studio, then think about whether your name needs to change to fit that vision. 

5. It doesn’t speak to your audience 

When your brand doesn’t speak to your audience, then they won’t resonate with it or love mentioning it. You want your brand to speak to your audience so that they feel like they love that name, they love that brand, and they can proudly share your name with other people. 

To sum it all up, if you have changed something in your business or something in your business or brand isn’t aligned with your brand name, then it’s time for a new name. You want to make sure that your name is always aligned with you, your vision, your mission and your audience, and that it stands out and really packs a punch. 

These are some of the reasons why I’ve decided to change my brand name, so that I can set myself up for the future, represent what it is that I do now and who I do it for, convey the energy that my brand is all about, and connect with the people that I want to connect with. 

I can’t wait to see all your exciting changes when you know it’s time for your new name! If you have any questions or thoughts on my new brand name, then flick me a DM over on Instagram, I would love to hear from you!

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August 18, 2021



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