What’s in a name?
Choosing the right name for your business is crucial. Your brand name is how your customers will come to know you and how they will reference you when they rave about your amazing service or product.
You wouldn’t rush naming your baby, and this is the same sort of thing. While you don’t have to consider the SEO implications of naming your newborn, and it doesn’t matter if another kid down the road is also called Annabelle Greene when it comes to naming your business these factors matter. What’s more, there is no Big Book of Pilates Studio names. It is time to get creative.
Take a look at our top tips to help you choose the right name for your fitness business.
Think about your online presence
Before you think of your business name you want to consider how it will look on a search engine. Your domain name does not have to describe your company in order to rank in Google. Up until 2012, domain names that explicitly explained a business’s function ranked highest on Google. For example, BestYogaStudioInMontreal.ca would have done well pre-2012, but algorithms have gotten smarter, realising that such a site might not have any substantial offering.
Nowadays, plenty of sites with abstract and obscure names rank highly. It is the content on your website and the number of meaningful visits to your pages that will put you near the top. However, sticking in your primary selling point can help, as the keyword will be put in bold, eg: LotusYoga.ca, RainbowStudio.ca. Some consumers find the bold keyword striking, thus they click onto the site. The more clicks the website receives, the more valuable Google bots perceive it to be, thus ranking improves.
The trick to being relevant in your market is to use keywords in your homepage title. Your homepage title will appear above your website domain on the Google search page. So even if your name doesn’t explain your business, your page title does. For example, if you’re called Tea leaf Yoga, it is not clear what the tea leaf has to do with yoga. Your page title can then explain: “Vinyasa movements performed while sipping floral tea blends.”
Keep it short and snappy
Experimenting with rhythm and sounds. Try out different word combinations, like rhyming words (eg. Zen Den) or alliterative pairings (eg. Fire Fit).
Think outside the box
Invent a new word. Google meant nothing until it was a company name. Actually, it was a purposefully misspelt version of the mathematical term for 1.0×10 to the power of 100: “googol”. Today, Google is used throughout the world as a noun, verb and adjective.
Sky peer-to-peer is a longwinded name for a business. Whittled down, Skype is a catchy product name.
Häagen-Dazs, Xerox, Kodak, Sony and Ikea are just some other companies whose names had no meaning.
Pluck from elsewhere
A fruit had nothing to do with computers and phones until Steve Jobs decided to name his company Apple and his first product mackintosh.
Similarly, you wouldn’t associate virgins with records, airlines and gyms, but Richard Branson has made Virgin a global brand, and the scandalous nature of the name helped to get the business noticed.
With brands launched every single day, finding a unique name is next to impossible. Studio Soleil might seem oh so unique and tres classy (it’s French after all), but a quick Google search reveals it’s also the name of a tanning salon in Arkansas. It may seem irrelevant that a business 10,000 kilometres away has the same title, but if that salon has thousands of orange customers, they may just overtake you on the Google search rankings- even in your country.
Besides, if the name is trademarked, it is illegal for you to use it.
Furthermore, if you have any intentions of expanding your fitness business to multiple locations, you are going to want to have a name that cannot be confused with another brand- competitive or otherwise.
Read more: How to use Instagram to build brand awareness
Consider tone and unique selling point (USP)
A name can conjure up your brand’s emotion. Yes, a fitness business has the aim of helping people get and stay fit, but there are many strands within in that goal that will set you apart from your competitors. Your fitness business might focus on hard work and sweat, energy and rejuvenation, learning and self-improvement or maximum exertion and pushing yourself to the limits.
Orangetheory Fitness suggests a workout based on proven scientific methods. Orangetheory is a global brand that uses heart rate technology to boost participant output. The name itself suggests a scientific approach to fitness, so perfectly encapsulates the unique selling point.
Budget chains often go for short, punchy titles that frequently (and bizarrely) include numbers: Fit4Less, Fat2Fit. Their titles point to their USP: Anytime Fitness (Open 24hrs), Pure Gym (no fuss). These names, like the businesses they represent, are no-nonsense and straight to the point.
The name of the game
Choosing a name for your fitness business requires time and patience. Even if you think you’ve found the perfect title for your business, sit with it for a week or two to make sure you’re still keen on the idea.
Question: What are some of the best fitness brand names you’ve heard of? How has your brand name influenced your business?
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