The best company names are easily recognized, memorable and strategic. This may not happen on the first try. For instance, Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing became 3M. International Business Machines (IBM) began as the Computing Tabulating Recording Corp. Today, the Internet allows companies well named to position their brands better across the globe. A new distinctive company name supported by quality content and key words can boost visitor engagement as never before.
A New Identity
President and CEO Laurence Briggs wants to build a group of food companies specializing in upscale Texas products. His proposal to change the company name Legends Foods Corporation to Republic of Texas Brands Incorporated was recently approved. Briggs said: “The name change represents the identity of our operational brands and ability to broaden the company’s activities into licensing of this prestigious brand throughout the world.” The company added a new domain name and trademarks. Companies acquired will be centralized under this new brand identity. Another location based company name is Cisco Systems, Inc., which is short for San Francisco.
Subtle or Grand Changes
Sodexho Alliance changed their name to Sodexo a few years ago. The name change reportedly was to draw emphasis away from the hotel services industry they were formerly associated with.
Just weeks ago, the American Dietetic Association announced their name change to Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics effective January 1, 2012. ADA President Sylvia Escott-Stump explained the change this way: “By adding nutrition to our name, we communicate our capacity for translating nutrition science into healthier lifestyles for everyone. Keeping dietetics supports our history as a food and science-based profession. Thus, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics quickly and accurately communicates our identity—who we are and what we do.” The organization’s domain name www.eatright.org will not change.
Wealth Effects of Name Change
Researchers from Chengchi University in Taiwan and the University of Wisconsin found that when oil prices are high stock returns and trading volume significantly increased for companies adding “oil” or “petroleum” to their names. Likewise, companies that removed “dot.com”, “dot.net”, and “internet” from their names after the Internet crash in 2000 found positive market reaction.
Content Support for a New Company Name
Company name changing should not be taken lightly. Name changes may confuse buyers so it is important to create new content on your website, newsletters, social media networks, blogs, and emails. Some of the online content that needs to change or be reviewed includes:
– Website domain name
– Logo and accompanying graphics
– Website content
– Keywords and meta tags
– Social media network icons, names
– Back links (if domain change)
– Videos, podcasts, webinars
Before the name change occurs launch a public relations campaign that includes reasons for the change, notify current customers and distribute information to the media through a press release. Even when a company or organization name has brand awareness with current customers a name change can create better business opportunities in today’s global economy.