Name: Sara Nana Yeboah
Name Of Company: SANGY Nursing Services
Choosing a business name is an essential element of building a successful brand, and defines your unique selling point. Choosing that killer name can be a long and painful process as most young entrepreneurs and business startups face the dilemma of defying the status quo, and separating themselves from their competition.
Successful businesses such as Google, Apple, Nokia, Facebook and Twitter have successfully demonstrated that names do play a big part in building a business’s success.
In Ghana, Sara Nana Yeboah is one person that is steadily building a brand to be recognised and remembered. Sara is a multiple awards winner, and CEO of The Sangy Group (SANGY Nursing Services and Co-founder of The SANGY Foundation).
With a jam-packed schedule, there is no rest for Sara as she successfully combines charity works and business with her active career as a nurse in Accra.
In this exclusive interview, I catch up with Sara to gain her insight and views on how young entrepreneurs can overcome the hurdle of choosing a business name, and make the most from business opportunities in Africa.
Prince: What was your challenge in choosing a name for your business?
SARA: At one time, creating a company name was an easy process. Many companies often took the simple approach by naming the company after the company’s founder or name it for the type of products/services they provide. Today is much difficult. Personally it took me Days to decide on ‘SANGY’. Research upon research and making sure no such brand name existed.
Prince: I have searched through the Lexicon to find “SANGY” but I’ve not gotten any result yet. What’s the meaning of SANGY and how did you conceive it?
SARA: I read that one’s name is an extension of his or her brand, and it can reinforce the value you provide or distance you from it. When developing our business name, I had a number of options but chose the initials of the names of the founders – Sara Nana Godfrey Yeboah. I got the idea whiles in church.
Prince: Do you believe names have an effect on business brands? If yes, how?
SARA: Yes, names have effects on a business brand, a company name and its brand should last the test of time. Consumers like consistency in companies, brands, and products. Oh sure, they say they like new products and features. But in actuality, they flock towards companies that are steeped in history. Don’t believe me. Go to any website and look at retail giants. They feature a portion of their website to the company’s history. Consumers crave information about how a company started, progressed, and what the company is doing today to make consumers even happier by purchasing more of its products. Teaching consumers why the company chose a particular colour or name will go a long way to selling merchandise.
Prince: What Top 5 Tips would you give a young African entrepreneur to select a perfect name?
Here are my top 5 Tips on How to Choose a Business Name –
1. Make it brief: Think about the speed in which you drive past a business, click through a webpage, or walk down a street. Customers need to be able to read your company sign in a matter of seconds (not minutes). Long names may look pretty on the marquee but they are difficult to remember. For example, some of the most successful retailers have brief names. These include: Tiffany’s, Bloomingdales, Macy’s, Neiman Marcus, Chanel, Target, Kohl’s. A consumer could be speeding down the street or playing dodge car in a taxi and still have time to read these company signs.
2. Create a positive image: Positive images can be created through a word, a font, colours, and/or backgrounds.
3. Create visuals that appeal: Imagine your company sign above your building doorway. Does it look visually appealing from afar? Does it represent your desired image? If not, the company name needs to be rebranded. Visual appeal is definitely a subjective topic. Top considerations include the location, target market, and merchandise products carried.
4. Be consistent: Spread the news that your company is conducting business. In other words, the company name should be on everything. The number one rule to this marketing tip is to be consistent. Using the same font, colour, and style is critical. Brand recognition is key. Train your customers to readily point out your company logo, brand or name. Eg. Gucci name and logo are used on all signs, packaging, websites and promotional materials.
5. Be unique: Avoid using a name that is used by another company. A name that is even similar to another company can cause legal difficulties. At the very least, consumers may become confused and patronise your competition. For example, SANGY, no company in the world is called that.
Entrepreneurs in Ghana, Nigeria and worldwide will face this challenge at some point in their business journey. The most important thing is to learn from others; don’t just dream it, learn, read and research on it.
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