The number one dilemma every ice cream retailer has when conceiving the business is: What should we call our concept? It can get really tough deciding, causing arguments, jealousy among partners, and simply, indecision. But eventually a name will emerge from the very mundane to the outrageous. And in most cases, it’s usually a reflection of the owner’s personality.
Question: What are the advantages and disadvantages of using your own name for the name of your company, like Christie’s Cookies, Charles Schwab, Williams-Sonoma, Ralph Lauren! In my case, 25 years ago, when I first started out, I called my ice cream- Malcolm’s Homemade. At the time it was a reflection of expanding from my restaurant to the ice cream business. And I remember the first time we were sampling our ice cream pints in a gourmet shop, someone tasted our product and said: “Who is Malcolm?” And since I was standing right there, I said: “I’m Malcolm.” Trust me, at that moment I felt very proud.
Answer: Basically, you’re asking, what’s in a name? And the answer is, plenty. Choosing an appropriate name is one of the most important decisions you’ll make for your ice cream store-the name you give your business can convey important messages about it. That said, one advantage of an entrepreneur using his name for his business is that it helps give the company a personality. Names like Ralph Lauren. Or consider Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. “To customers and other constituencies, it suggests that the founder is actively involved,” says James Bell of Lippincott Mercer, brand strategy consultants. Bell says founders often decide to use their names for their companies if they are involved in consumer-oriented businesses, including restaurants, bakeries, bars, or retail ice cream shops should be more descriptive of your product or concept.
Whatever route you decide on, remember to take the time to choose a name that will fit your company’s persona.