So, I’ve decided to start blogging once a month about marketing for health professionals and bloggers. Why? Well, my passion is health, autoimmune disease, and I’m currently studying to be a nutritional therapy practitioner. However, my day job is digital marketing. My degree is in Emerging Media and Communication and I’ve managed paid advertising, website development, social media, and content marketing for brands with TV shows, nonprofits, and even a popular Paleo brand. I’m constantly thinking about how everything works in a digital space, and really just want to share my knowledge here! So many NTP’s, nutritionist, health professionals, and health bloggers start their business or brand and just kind of wait for the business to come to them… I want to share about how to bring it to you!
First, I want to start at the ground floor, and that’s naming your business. Before you can have a thriving business, practice, or blog, you have to actually create it by naming it. I know what you’re thinking. “All of the good names are already taken”, or “I’m not creative enough”. However, it’s totally within your grasps to come up with a unique, catchy name for your business or blog as a health entrepreneur.
Here are my 7 tips on how to name your business…
1.Do your research. You could have the best idea for the most catchy name, but if it’s already taken or too close to another brand, it’s best to start from scratch. Here’s what you want to research…
- Domain. You really, really want a .com. They’ll almost always rank better in terms of SEO (organic search), and are much easier to remember. People will always default to a .com, so you’ll tire yourself out always reminding people if it’s a .net.
- Avoid dashes. This is another one that’s hard for people to remember.
- Social media. Ensure that you can get your name on all social media platforms. I’m still trying to get my blog name on twitter, and it’s a pain.
- Other brands. Is there a brand that’s similar to yours that also has a similar name? I’d say it’s a no go.
2. Don’t get tied down to a specific “diet”. This is a tricky one. It’s undeniable that people do search for certain diets like, the “paleo diet”, “gluten free” or “vegan”. Even if you can pretty much guarantee that you’ll always recommended that diet, I’d advise to pick a name that doesn’t tie yourself to a diet template, especially if you’re a health professional or more broad based blogger (exception to follow).
I’d be lying if I said that no one has ever been successful with a name the includes “Gluten Free”, or some other diet template. Many people make it work. However, I’d still recommend that you’re going to be saving yourself some potential backlash.
So, what exactly could happen?
- You may have to denounce that diet template one day. People change… what if I were to tell you that I almost never ate meat but am now a happy bacon eater? What if I named my blog, “NoMeatGirl” or something like that? I’d have to go back on that promise that I made my audience and probably suffer a lot of backlash. Jordan Younger of BalancedBlonde who was once the BlondeVegan, or Alex Jameson were both vegans and suffered severe backlash from the Vegan community when they changed their tastes.
- The demand could change. I can pretty much guarantee that I’m going to have to stay gluten free for the rest of my life. However, will “gluten free” still be a big as it 10 years from now? Will it still be called “gluten free”? I can’t guarantee that.
Here are a few case studies that better help illustrate that point…
Many of you know and love Liz Wolfe. She’s smart, funny, and is basically one of favorites. Before she was Real Food Liz, she was Cave Girl Eats. Though I can’t say I know the exact reason behind Liz’s name change, I can tell you that it was an excellent move. “Cave Girl” comes with the association with Paleo, and though Liz follows a general Paleo template, she doesn’t preach strict Paleo. Rather, she built her brand off of real food. Real food fits her brand better, is more relatable to the general public, and hey, “real food” gets a lot more searches than “cave girl” according to Google trends.
Abel James of the Fat Burning Man and the Wild Diet
I became familiar with Abel from the Fat Burning Man podcast. He has several great products including “The Wild Diet”. The Wild Diet is very similar to the Paleo Diet. However, by creating his own brand, Abel saw some huge success. Not only was he still appealing to a defined Paleo audience, but he was opening up the potential to those who potentially had a bad impression of the term, “Paleo”. the term, “Paleo” is still hot right now, but who knows where it’ll be in 10 years? By coining his own term, Abel was thinking a step ahead of the game.
3. Consider your possible niche. As I said before, it’s best to stay more broad if you’re a health professional or a broad blogger, but if you’re really just wanting to zero in on a niche and have researched the heck out of it, you need to consider that niche.
Not every brand needs to be detached from “trendy” terms. Even though you don’t want to get too tied down to a certain diet template or trend, you may still have to consider your niche if you’re really looking to get focused and zero in on a very narrow audience. Take the following example…
Though “green smoothies” is a bit of a trendy term, it works for their brand which is just about the smoothies. These ladies actually got started in the health world with a much more broad brand, but quickly found that it just wasn’t working for them, and Simple Green Smoothies took off. Their brand is now much more narrow, but it works.
5. Be memorable and unique. We all remember catchy jingles, funny commercials, and short, snappy names. The easier to spell, the better in the internet age!
6. Don’t be afraid to seek outside help and opinion. Even the biggest, most successful brands have outside agencies come in to help them build their brand or come up with their name. It’s so incredibly helpful to have an outside perspective. So, who can you ask?
- Friends and family
- Likeminded people in your target market (find them on forums, other blogs, etc)
- Your website or graphic designer
- Your social media community/friends
7. Don’t get too hung up on it. When you’re an entrepreneur, you want things to be perfect… I get it. However, if picking a name is really holding you up that much that you’re delaying the process of launching your business by weeks and months, just pull the trigger. If it doesn’t work down the line, remember that even the biggest brands have changed their name. It’s not ideal, but it’s not the end of the world.
When naming my own business/blog, it was kind of painstaking. I was so set on one name with a domain that was already taken and almost forked over hundreds of dollars for it. However, after I stopped getting too hung up on just one name, I did my research, ask some friends, and named my blog. More importantly… that enabled me to launch it.
So, what about you? How did you name your blog or business? Or if you’re still naming it, what are you struggling with the most?