If you are actively thinking about it, then it’s probably because you are starting a business, merging two businesses together, spinning off a business or launching a new product or service.
All four of these circumstances are different and challenging in their own unique ways, but they are very similar in that they involve brand strategy and naming.
- Startups have the relative luxury of time. Being new, they are unknown and have a veil of anonymity behind which they can create a business before launching with a well structured brand. Facebook, Apple, Google and Microsoft were all startups at one time.
- Mergers are much more complicated affairs. Companies that are merging are established businesses in their own right and the merger takes in the full glare of investor, customer and employee scrutiny as interested parties. A brand-based story about why they are merging, beyond the immediate business synergies, is central to creation of a strong, unifying culture and the success of the merger itself. Decisions have to be made about names.
Existing brand names have to be carefully evaluated in terms of their equity and viability as candidates for the new company and how they fit in the new corporate structure.
- Spinoffs have been described as $1billion startups. A $1billion or not, they are usually divisions or subsidiaries of large corporations that are hived off as standalone businesses and sold to shareholders. In this case, the new company has to completely invent itself in terms of its name, who it is and what it stands for.
- Creating a brand for a new product or service line balances the degree of uniqueness of the product or service against the strength and role of the parent brand. Within a masterbrand strategy the new brand would typically carry a more descriptive name.
In each case the approach to the name may vary according to the circumstances and the need. But they all need to be rooted in a fact-based brand strategy, the basis of which is a positioning statement.
A positioning statement is a written description of the ideal position that a company wishes its product or its brand to occupy in the minds of its target audiences. It defines: who you are as a business and what you do, your customers – who you do it for, the value you deliver beyond what you make or provide, and how it enables your customers to be successful.
BrandingBusiness has guided senior executive teams successfully through a measured and managed naming process on this basis to produce breakthrough corporate names and brands.
From start-ups and early stage companies to corporate spin-offs, mergers and strategic corporate rebranding, our track record is extensive and impressive.