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My name or business name?

Discussion in 'General Business Forum:' started by Artyfart, Apr 4, 2012.

  1. Artyfart

    Artyfart Member

    Hi all

    I had a conversation with a web developer at the weekend and I was talking about going freelance as a graphic designer for print (well anything I am a graphics whore :crazy:) he reckoned that when I come to choosing a name for myself I should go with my own name and not a business name. he never got to telling me why he thought this and to be honest I hate my name and I'm getting married in November so would have to change it!

    What do you guys think? I'm having a really hard time coming up with ideas for branding my cruddy name and would love to go with a business name of some sort.

    Answers on a postcard.....
  2. Kev Clarke

    Kev Clarke Member

    What is your cruddy name?
  3. Artyfart

    Artyfart Member

    Are you kidding, I'm not saying on here! lol isn't this public!?
  4. daytona

    daytona Member

    What are we going to do with a name...
    Pretty hard to suggest anything without knowing it.
  5. Artyfart

    Artyfart Member

    No....I meant is there a rule of thumb that you should use your name if your freelance and sole trader or go for a company name? The guy I was talking to said never ever go for a company name if you're working alone as it looks better to use your name. Don't know why weird to me! He has a web development company and it's called by his full name and he said reckons I should do the same as quote "it looks better and is easier" just wondered why? I'd like to chose a company name as it's easier to market/brand. My name is just really boring and the surname is long so it can hardly fit in on a card! Just doesn't look right! I have loads of ideas but the personal name option just looks really and uncomfortable so I'd rather chose a company name or just initials or something like that but according to this guy that would be a sin! Odd!
  6. Minuteman Press

    Minuteman Press Moderator

    I do think that personal names limit you (if you are a business) for the future (e.g. business partner on board, selling the business, etc), can also seem self indulgent.

    I would use a business name - but nothing idiotic / pretentious / incomprehensible.
  7. Kev Clarke

    Kev Clarke Member

    You might find creating a business name tricky, a lot of names are already in use giving a website competition from the off.
    On the other hand if your name is more unique there maybe a better chance of securing a unique website and therefore capturing all of your intended traffic. You could even slightly adapt your name, make a play on words or add to the name highlighting what you do e.g design, graphics, studio etc...
  8. jimcroisdale

    jimcroisdale New Member

    Make your business name simple, using words that are impossible to mis-hear over the phone, or mis-spell.

    Our company is called Aura Print and it's a definite problem - I have to spell the name nearly every time I tell someone our email address or website. Some of these will still mis hear, write it down wrong and thus business is lost.

    If your name is simple, use that. If it's a hard to spell name (like my surname!) then i wouldn't bother.


  9. dedwardp

    dedwardp Member

    I think there are certainly pros and cons to both approaches and it's something I've considered from time to time, but more on how to present the business.

    As Minuteman says, using a brand name will open more opportunities in the future and, for the time being, you could still present it as a freelancer in the writing, i.e "XYZ is the home of Joe Bloggs, a graphic designer from..." etc.

    There will be plenty of people who enjoy working with freelancers and you can promote the benefits of that if you take that approach; more personal, no middle men, deal with the designer, more flexibility etc. But for everyone who may prefer it, there will be others who prefer the idea of working with a larger organisation where they may perceive more security and prestige.

    There's enough designers out there promoting themselves as freelance who enjoy enough success to show it's possible, but I don't see the harm either way.
  10. Katedesign

    Katedesign Well-Known Member

    I don't think it matters too much. I trade under a business name and the second word is a play on I do say 'sweet' as in 'sucky sweet' instead of spelling it. It hopefully makes them remember me. But the name is historical and I thought we might have to start a limited company at some point.

    Think of names and see what domains are still available....
  11. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member

    Unless you're targetting a niche market, broad appeal in a trading name is the thing: only a certain type of business will want to work with Awesome Trilobite Designs (or whatever - you're welcome) so, in that sense, your given name is a sensible option if nothing else. Personally, I'd not worry too much about selling a business on, etc. (unless that's your core objective) as it's the kind of flight of fancy that can bog you down when you're trying to set something up.
  12. Kev Clarke

    Kev Clarke Member

    Time to share your name with us then and we can start to brain storm some potential names?
  13. Artyfart

    Artyfart Member

    Ohhh bloody hell alright then! Twist me arm. It's Tania Rodway soon to be Langridge. People can never spell my first name, always ask "is that YA or IA" drives me crazy! Then my surname seems to cause all sorts of problems god knows why!? Langridge....wel that's even worse. You'd think it was Indian or something! I'm not bothered about selling on, that doesn't interest me I'm a little too long in the tooth to worry about that now. Thanks for all your great advice, I really do appreciate it! :icon_smile:
  14. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member

  15. pcbranding

    pcbranding Member

    'Do it the Ridgeway'!
    While I'm here, I'll vote for going with your own name...
  16. Artyfart

    Artyfart Member

    Mmm not sure about that....sounds like a American steakhouse! (Sorry lol) What about Grace design and print? My daughter's middle name? I have a headache!
  17. dedwardp

    dedwardp Member

    What about opting for something towards your initials then, TR/TL?
  18. Artyfart

    Artyfart Member

    You know, Ridgeway is growing on me!
  19. Kev Clarke

    Kev Clarke Member

    What's wrong with langridge creative?
  20. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member

    Possible issue with that is that it could easily be misheard as 'language'

    'ridgewaycreative' appears to be available as a domain, by the way...

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