Roy's Blog: Entrepreneurs

December 7, 2018

How to create the perfect name for your business — guest post

If you are in the process of starting a new business, there are many important things that will need to be considered. Things such as the product or service you’ll be selling, your target market, and your specific business structure (sole proprietorship, LLC, etc.) will all be very important.

But one aspect of starting a new business that people often overlook is their company name.

Though, at first, your name may seem to be a rather small detail, it may actually be what ends up either making or breaking your business. Furthermore, your name is one of the first ways that your business can establish a clear competitive advantage.

Perfect name

Fortunately, the perfect name for your business is something that is likely well within reach. In this post, we will discuss the most important things for you to think about when brainstorming business names and we will also discuss some of the most time-tested strategies you should consider using.

Choose a name that’s original

There is no doubt that in order to survive in the competitive world of business, you will need to demonstrate your relevance and separate yourself from the competition.
If you are someone who is considering entering an already crowded industry—which even tech startups are beginning to get quite crowded—then you will need to choose a name that will make a lasting impression.
As you begin the process of searching for original names, you should also define your mission, your company values, and the specific image you are hoping to inspire.

More often than not, your name will be one of the first thing that prospective clients and investors know about your company.
You should assume that there are already a dozen companies offering a similar product at a similar price. So instead of conforming to the norm and latching onto a name that may have been useful twenty years ago, you should redefine the standard and come up with a name that challenges the norm.
Though taking chances can sometimes be uncomfortable, doing so is an essential part of becoming an entrepreneur.

... but also make sure the name is easy to remember

Many companies that hope to come up with an original name often end up creating new words. Tech companies such as Facebook, Microsoft, Android, and others have all chosen names that—prior to their initial establishment—would not be found in any English-speaking dictionary.
However, while all of these names are indeed unique, they are also relatively easy to remember.

Remember

Here are some of the essential things you should keep in mind when trying to create a memorable name:
    — try and limit the number of words and syllables that your name uses
    — even if you are using a made up word, choose a word that is easy to spell
    — try this simple test: give someone you know a list of ten words (one of which is the name you are considering) and then ten minutes later see which of those words they are able to remember

Though the “test” mentioned in this list is obviously non-binding, it can be a very useful checkmark throughout the brainstorming process. Usually, it makes sense to come up with a list of many possible names and then see which ones are actually able to stick.

Check to see which naming strategies are common in your industry

Despite the fact that you should strive to come up with an original name, it is still a good idea to understand the various naming strategies that are standard in your industry. Whether you end up adopting these strategies or turning them on their head, you should still be aware of how your industry works.
    — Naming a company after the founders or owners: this strategy is especially common for law firms, real estate firms, and other similar businesses.
    — Using puns, portmanteaus, and other plays on words: this strategy may be useful for businesses that focus more on creating a friendly image for their clients (rather than focusing on trying to lure capital investors).
    — Creating a word that is entirely unique: this is one of the most common strategies used by members of the tech industry and other industries attempting to be futuristic.
    — Trying to sound traditional: when it comes to creating new business names, century-old traditions are typically a bad idea. However, these names may sometimes work for the more “serious” industries such as banking, insurance, and medical care.

Another trend that has recently emerged is the use of single words—nouns, verbs, and adjectives—when coming up with business names. Whether or not this strategy will be appropriate will depend upon the nature of your business as well as your target audience.

Test the name with potential future clients

No matter what product or service you may be attempting to sell, what remains universally clear is that some people are simply much more likely to identify with your brand than others.
Once you have defined your target market — demographics, lifestyles, etc.—then you will be in a position to gather a focus group that can potentially test your name.

Target market

When running a focus group, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Not only should you make sure that your name is one that people actually like, but you should also make sure that the name is one that is able to effectively connect with your desired brand image.
Even though there is likely a name that you personally prefer, it is important to try to be objective and open to outside input.

Confirm that your business name is entirely usable

Lastly, once you have narrowed your list to a final name or two, you should check to make sure that your name is universally compatible. Typically, this will involve multiple different things:
    — making sure none of your competitors have the same name or even a very similar name
    — making sure that your name is compatible/non-offensive to other cultures (this is especially important for international businesses)
    — making sure that there is a suitable web domain available for your name

Thoroughly investigating the context of your name is very important. One of the last things you would want to do as a new business owner is have to rename your company right off the bat.

Conclusion

The naming process is one that is absolutely crucial and should not be willingly ignored. There are many different things that will need to be considered when coming up with a new name including your company values, originality, and whether or not your name is actively available.

By taking the time to find the ideal name for your business, you will be in a much better position to succeed and stand out from the crowd.

Grant Polachek is the Director of Marketing at Inc 500 company Squadhelp.com, the worlds #1 naming platform, with nearly 20,000 customers from the smallest startups across the globe to the largest corporations including Nestle, Philips, Hilton, Pepsi, and AutoNation. Get inspired by exploring these winning brand name ideas.

  • Posted 12.7.18 at 04:41 am by Roy Osing
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December 3, 2018

What does a service miracle look like?

Most organizations have a customer service strategy.

The following are typical claims they make in terms of what they intend to deliver:
— “we provide the best customer service”
— “we were voted #1 in service”
— “our goal is to exceed our customers’ expectations”
— “we go the extra mile…”
— “we pride ourselves on providing high quality service”
— “we provide memorable experiences”

These are all laudable expressions in terms of the service experience outcome they want to provide.

Words music

Words vs music

The problem, however, isn’t in the words; it’s in the music.

For example, they say “your call is important to us”, yet force us to wait 40 minutes to speak with a call center rep. How is this consistent with delighting anybody? I pity the frontline person every time they answer a call knowing how upset EVERY customer will be for having to wait so long. Pain ensues…

Unfortunately most organizations fail to deliver on their customer service promise.

There are two reasons for this:
— they don’t understand the essential elements that contribute to service miracles;
— they are unable to execute consistently on the service elements they choose to focus on.

The irony is that many organizations fail because they are inept at implementing flawed service elements. Not only do they suck at execution, they are trying to do the wrong thing.

So let’s start at the beginning. What are the things that must be done — the service elements — to deliver miraculous service experiences?

Hire miracle workers

Hire people who want to be in the same room with other humans. Miracles are delivered by people who create moments, not technology that delivers according to an algorithm.

And if you don’t recruit people who “love” humans you’re dead from the beginning. Your current recruitment strategy must be blown up and reinvented. It’s mission must be to identify those people who are innately driven to serve others whatever it takes.

Miracles

Attract servant leaders

The internal world of any organization must be “cleansed” is miracles are to be commonplace.

Barriers to delivering astonishing moments must be expunged. Tools that enable conversation time with customers must be provided to everyone. And bureaucratic CRAP that prevents miracle workers from doing their job must be eliminated.

Leaders who serve ask “How can I help?” are the powerful force to enable this culture. Find ‘em. Grab ‘em. Never let ‘em go.

Morph your executive leadership program reward managers who serve others like an involuntary muscle. Command and control freaks have no place in creating miracles.

Let your people go

Empower people to serve people. It’s the loose vs tight dilemma.

Do you trust that your miracle workers will do the right thing for the company if you empower them to take customers to a heightened service experience?

Many organizations believe that they will go too far left to satisfying the customer and sink company profits. RUBBISH! In my experience, if they are given the trust of leadership, they are amazing at balancing what it takes to dazzle someone while at the same time protecting the come.

Ok, say they go too far for a customer every once in a while. Are you telling me that there are no other occasions in the company’s world where margins may not be optimized?

The real issue is: do you want to dilute your margins for a customer miracle or do you want to do it for a sales conference in Maui?

Phobia

Lose the cost phobia

“But we can’t provide all the resources needed to deliver miracles and still deliver the margins expected of us”. HOGWASH!

Ever see a study that correlates “touch time” with net income? NO! and you never will. But you do see market share statistics explain a drop in revenue accompanied by stories of excommunicated customers who were unable to take crummy service.

The cost guys want cost to drive investment decisions and as a result really stupid service acts are taken like outsourcing call centres to a part of the world that has a difficult time with our language.

Yes these folks are well educated on IP technology but I CAN’T COMMUNICATE WITH THEM BECAUSE I DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT THEY’RE SAYING.

I love Tony Heish’s really simple view of call centers. They’re not cost centers, they’re “loyalty centers” and should be managed as such. Invite someone to call. Spend as much time with them as you have to take care of them. Deliver a miracle and they will return.

Kill the stupid

There’s a lot of stupid stuff we do to that piss our customers off.

Rules, policies and procedures intended to maintain efficient operations fly right in the face of customer logic. So they may satisfy some internal perspective of sense, but are destructive — ineffective — in delivering service miracles.

Empty booths

The couple who wants a booth in a Vegas restaurant but is refused because booths are reserved for parties of 4 or more is really annoyed when there are only a few people there and all booths are vacant.

Miracles are simple to deliver when you realize that the customer’s desires supplant the internal world of an organization.

The real question is: do we have the guts to put the customer in control of the rules we operate under? If YES, miracles will come; if NO mediocrity will stay and DEMISE will most likely result.

A simple starting point. Purge “It’s not our policy” from your vocabulary and fire anyone who utters it (and tell the rest of the organization you did it).

Miracles are simple

Miracles are not complicated. In fact as customers ourselves, we find they are often created by simple moments that surprise us because we are not used to special treatment.

We are in a retail store (known for its lack of service) unable to find an open service counter to pay for our purchases. A young man dressing a mannequin spots us meandering; he offers his help and finds an open service position for us.

Complicated? NO!

Caring? YES!

A bloody miracle? ABSOLUTELY!

Cheers,
Roy

Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead book series

Recent articles you might like
The right idea with no execution is a bloody waste
How to AMAZE your customers in 4 easy ways
How to start your journey to be different

  • Posted 12.3.18 at 03:19 am by Roy Osing
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November 30, 2018

7 healthy habits of successful people you need to adopt — guest post

Fitness 1

If there’s one thing that all successful people have in common, it’s good habits.

Rather than leaving things to chance, most of them know that triumph comes from self-reliance and being able to tackle problems that come their way, and they always make room for self-growth.

If you want to lead an impressive life full of achievements, it’s crucial to take a look at how these powerful people hone their skills and what they do every day to stay at the very top of the social ladder.

Eager to tap into your potential and discover the secrets of prosperity? Then adopt these seven habits.

Become an early riser

You’ll simply get more done. If your mornings are productive you’ll immediately feel like you’re using your day well, and you’ll get the added benefit of finishing things when everything is quiet and there are no distractions.

This also means that you should go to bed early because getting enough sleep is very important if you want to be awake and energetic during the day. To make it easier, try to establish a pattern that you’ll stick to even on weekends—while it might be tempting to sleep in on Saturday, it can actually mess up your routine and make you feel constantly tired.

Fitness 2

Use fitness to grow confident

Successful people put their wellbeing first, and one of the most important parts of a healthy lifestyle is exercise. If you work out regularly you’ll become fit and have a ton more energy, and you can tone your body and make it look really good.

All of these things are an immense boost to confidence, so pick an activity you can enjoy and try to stay consistent. Swimming, running, doing sports, or doing short home workouts are all great ways to exercise, and you can also go to the gym and see about hiring a personal trainer if you need more help.

Eat for health

If you want to feel good in your own body you’ll need to have a decent meal plan.

Start by cutting down on sugar and junk food because this will reduce the levels of inflammation in your body, and then introduce more veggies, fruit, and lean meats into your diet.

You should also consider stocking up on some useful supplements like CoQ10, vitamin E, and glutathione because all of these have antioxidant properties that can benefit your cardiovascular health and keep you safe from infections and diseases.

Eating well means you’re ready to invest in yourself, and there’s nothing more important than taking care of your own needs.

Fitness 3

Have a planner

It can be in form of an app on your phone, or it can be a small notebook. Pick whatever you prefer, and make sure to really use it every day.

A planner will help you manage your time well and remind you of any important meetings and events, and writing things down will mean you get to have all your thoughts in order.

Bullet journal is also an option, so pick whatever suits your lifestyle better.

Cancel distractions

The best way to maximize productivity is to minimize distractions. If you know you have to get something done, get down to it and stop checking your Instagram every few minutes.

Forget about social media, forget about poking at your phone, and just stop finding things to pull your focus away from the task at hand.

Make no excuses

We all have dreams and we all have ideas. The difference between those who are successful and those who aren’t, is whether they know how to make those ideas into reality.

Stop finding excuses about why something can’t be done and start finding solutions—adopting a go-getter mindset makes a world of difference because it forces you to become crafty, to fight for things that you’re passionate about. Sitting around and despairing over dreams that are out of your reach never got anyone anywhere.

However, getting up and becoming active, getting stubborn and pursuing your interests—that’s the key to making it in the world.

Surround yourself by positive people

Negativity has a big impact on us whether we like it or not, and being surrounded by petty, jealous people who do nothing but whine can seriously degrade your confidence.

Instead of staying close to people who seem to complain for a living, find a crowd of positive, successful people. Find those who are eager and who don’t mind hard work, and soak up their good energy.
They’ll inspire you to act in a similar manner, and the world will be a much brighter place once you get out from under that rainy cloud of cynicism.

All of these habits are really useful, but bear in mind that you don’t have to adopt them all at the same time. Take small steps and work towards a goal, and success will soon come.

Luke Douglas is a fitness and health blogger at Ripped.me and a great fan of the gym and a healthy diet. He follows the trends in fitness, gym and healthy life and loves to share his knowledge through useful and informative articles.

Luke Douglas

  • Posted 11.30.18 at 04:42 am by Roy Osing
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November 26, 2018

The right idea with no execution is a waste

How many times have you heard someone say “right idea!” when there is an execution blip that nullifies success and an otherwise brilliant notion bites the dust.

You hear it in kids’ sports all the time, particularly soccer, where a plan to pass the ball to a mate is intercepted by an opposition player. The right intent was there but execution fell short of an awesome outcome. “Right idea!” is intended to support the right behaviour and encourage the player to try it again and again until it works.

But it’s deflating. You can see they have a picture in their mind of what the result should be, but it’s shattered when it doesn’t play out the way it was envisioned.

Missed

The situation has a parallel both in organizational and personal life.

Organizations have a “Right idea!” when they develop their strategic game plan; individuals have a “Right idea!” when they plot their career or life destination.

Right ideas are plentiful

There is no shortage of right ideas; organizations come up with plans to grow their business and individuals always have ideas — or dreams — to build a better life or take their career to a higher level.

The thing is, the percentage of right ideas that make it through the successful implementation funnel are few and far between — for example half of startups fail in the first 5 years and it’s not an exceptional occurrence when careers fall short of expectations.

The failure to execute on a “Right idea!” is beyond disappointing, it hurts.

In my experience people just don’t spend enough time determining exactly what has to be done to bring the right idea to life.
The idea may be borne in an instant but more time is required on what to do with it to see it to a successful conclusion.

If you can’t implement, you’re done — end of your story.

These four essentials will increase the odds your “Right idea!” crossing the finish line.

Double down on implementation

Be prepared to dive deep on determining how to execute your idea.
Unfortunately the idea has no life on its own; it’s a figment of the imagination; a mere possibility.
It needs to be transformed into something practical before it has any value.

Double down

The idea to prevent a driver of a vehicle from using their mobile device while driving is an easily understood solution to the distracted driving problem, but unless it can be delivered to the market it remains on the entrepreneur’s wish list. The idea emerged 24 months ago in an insightful moment; implementation is 2 years in and counting.
And a career goal to be a VP without a disciplined strategy to get there is a dream with a low probability of success.

Focus on ONE (or two) things

Don’t try to boil the ocean; focus on a handful of actions that you believe will result in successfully seeing your idea come to fruition.
There are many actions you COULD take to implement your idea — usually a result of brainstorming — but the challenge is to define the few critical moves you SHOULD make.
You don’t have sufficient time or money to pursue numerous approaches at the same time; narrow them down to one or two that you believe are essential to moving the implementation yardsticks fast.

In business, one effective way of achieving this is to select ONE target market to attack rather than spraying your efforts across several potential ones. Rather than focusing on a consumer segment, for example, which is complicated and often expensive to penetrate, target a specific business application which is more easily reached.
Or, go after a confined geographic area — a province or state —rather than a broader one like a country.

In your career, concentrate on ONE specific position in a specific organization you want rather than sending your résumé out to “the world” which will likely get lost in the noise and be ignored.
In terms of personal resolutions don’t choose 5 or 6 popular ones; pick ONE that really matters to you — it’s unrealistic to try and accomplish too many things; it will rob you of your optimism and energy.

Don’t chase cars

Stay focused; resist the temptation to stray from your action plan when new possibilities descend on you.
It’s all very well to be open to new avenues to explore but it can end up with you chasing anything that comes along.
Chasing makes you busy, but is unlikely to achieve the results you want.
Every entrepreneur faces this issue. They no sooner lock their launch plan down and a new possibility comes over-the-transom and hits them — an application, a partner, a technology change.

Chase cars

Yes, this “yummy incoming” should be considered and examined thoughtfully, but not chased. Thoughtful consideration of these new possibilities must be given and should have overwhelming benefits before you decide to give up your initial execution plan.
On a personal level, how many times have you been on a path and something new and cool shows itself? Awfully tempting to drop what you’re doing and chase it, right? DON’T!

Plan on the run

Make changes on the run in the face of setbacks that question your idea. It is a rare event when your original implementation plan plays out the way you had intended — not because of yummy, but due to your planned actions not achieving the results you expected.

For example, a planned sales channel couldn’t be negotiated, your original pricing model was unacceptable to potential clients or the original revenue estimates from your primary target market were overly ambitious.
In circumstances like these it may be appropriate to revise the direction of your implementation strategy.

“Right idea!” is a great place to start, but unless you put on your execution hat with this guidance, it will never see the light of day.

“Right idea!”; “Brilliant execution!” is the combination that will ensure you avoid the remorse of failure.

Cheers,
Roy

Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead book series

Recent articles you might like
How to AMAZE your customers in 4 easy ways
How to start your journey to be different
Leaders: your audacious goal could actually hurt people

  • Posted 11.26.18 at 04:39 am by Roy Osing
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