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Mind Your Business: The Name Game


A rose by any other name may smell as sweet, but the fact is, some roses end up in extravagant bridal bouquets while others end up wilting away in a plastic bucket in front of a gas station on the highway.

How you name your business is as important as how you run it. A clever name can go a long way to helping you stand out from your competition.

Your name should be simple and memorable and it should say what you do. Most importantly, it should catch people’s attention. Here are a few great examples.

I Wear Your Shirt

Owner Jason Sadler is a social media consultant. Like the many thousands of social media consultants out there, he works on a per project basis to promote businesses via Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and the like. But, Sadler took a different approach to marketing himself and the result has been big success.

His company, I Wear Your Shirt, is based on the premise that he and his team of four other “shirt wearers” will wear a T-shirt advertising a company’s logo for a day. The concept has played well in the press, garnering Sadler lots of attention.

In reality, however, the T-shirt is just symbolic. By “wearing your shirt” what Sadler really means is that they’ll do your social media bidding for the day. He and his employees spend the day or week spreading the word about their clients and drumming up attention for them in any way they can.

Still, it sounds a lot more exciting than advertising as a “social media consultant.”

The Laundress

These ladies make me want to do laundry. And that’s saying something.

The Laundress began as a tiny startup owned by Lindsey Wieber Boyd and Gwen Whiting in 2004. Today, the company sells eco-friendly laundry products in sophisticated but simple packaging. The company now has eight employees and its products are available in 40 countries. It has also recently partnered with J. Crew to create a line of products.

While their products are good and the timing for launching an eco-friendly product was just right, there’s no doubt The Laundress hit a nerve by branding themselves with an intriguing name and positioning their brand as a luxurious solution to a necessary evil.


In terms of branding, StyleFactory is a great name. So, great, in fact, that the company’s owner paid $10,000 to a guy in Korea who was sitting on the domain name. It turned out to be well worth the money.

The New York-based company uses crowd sourcing (querying the online masses) to allow its customers to vote on which furniture prototypes get produced. Only the most popular designs are actually manufactured.

Since its launch late last year, StyleFactory has begin to not only democratize the production process, it’s also created an outlet for artists and designers to get their work produced.

Rent the Runway

Rent the Runway rents out clothing and accessories to customers who want to look like they’re walking the red carpet for an evening.
Co-founders Jennifer Hyman and Jenny Fleiss launched Rent the Runway in 2009 and has a team of stylists available to chat with customers about their fashion needs.

Through their fashion-related branding and their prolific use of Twitter to report on New York’s Fashion Week, the pair is branding their company as being in the know and on the runway. (Or at least sitting very near.)


StubStory is a new website that allows users to post images of their favorite ticket stubs – from concerts, shows, movies, plane tickets, you name it – and tell the story of their memory of the event.

Matt Peter, the company’s founder, said he started the site after his 5- year-old daughter found a bunch of his old concert tickets and asked what he was going to do with them. Peter realized that he wasn’t the only one who had stories to share after his friends started posting their “Stub Stories” on his site.

The site is free to users. Peter envisions that the platform will evolve into a service that can be used to enhance other websites, such as those of artists, musicians and museums who want to let their fans share their stub stories, too.

Jeanette Mulvey is the managing editor of BusinessNewsDaily. She has written about small business for more than 20 years and formerly owned her own e-commerce business. Her column, Mind Your Business, appears on Mondays only on BusinessNewsDaily. You can follow her on Twitter at @jeanettebnd or contact her via e-mail at ' ); document.write( addy85565 ); document.write( '' ); //--> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it "> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Jeanette Mulvey

Jeanette has been writing about business for more than 20 years. She has written about every kind of entrepreneur from hardware store owners to fashion designers. Previously she was a manager of internal communications for Home Depot. Her journalism career began in local newspapers. She has a degree in American Studies from Rutgers University. Follow her on Twitter @jeanettebnd.