The first article in this series of articles about getting your brand new arts or crafts business up and running is about picking out a concept for your business. This includes the big three questions: do you have the skills to handcraft the items? If not can, you easily learn the skill. And, finally, can you create a market for your art or craft?
This article discusses your next logical step: naming your new arts or crafts business. Like the first article in this series, this is a three-prong effort. You have to come up with a good name, good tagline and website domain name. Most of the time, I find this step the most excruciating as it's the first thing your customer will know about your business. Therefore, you want it to be memorable and descriptive of your business as a whole
Picking Out a Name for Your Arts and Crafts Business
For a brand new business, your first inclination is to probably not to use your name as your business name. Hopefully someday you'll have the same type of branding in place as well known artists and crafters such as Lorraine Schwartz, Alexander Calder or Kaffe Fassett. For now, keep your arts and crafts business name somewhat descriptive of your type of arts or crafts.
Pursuing Name Recognition for Your Art or Craft
Although even that rule can be broken if you plan to aggressively pursue name recognition. For example, Todd Reed is synonymous with raw diamond jewelry. Myra Burg has effectively branded herself with quiet oboes.
Making your name synonymous with a type or art or craft is hard work. It's work enough in the beginning to get your arts or crafts business off the ground. I recommend not attempting this aggressive branding as a beginner craft business owner unless you can pay a PR firm to handle the details.
That being said, Sara Blakely, the face behind the enormously successful Spanx®, has a wonderful story on her website about naming her product well worth a read. I bought my first pair of Spanx® in 2004 and even back then, the product was gearing up for the same type of branding as Kleenex® versus tissue or Xerox® versus copier. However, you have to consider the fact that Blakely is a marketing machine. Plus the name fit the product and was extremely memorable.
Looking for more inspiration? Check out these five rules for naming your business by Susan Ward, About.com Guide to Small Business: Canada.
While you are pondering names for your arts and crafts business, take a quick look online to make sure the domain name for likely contenders is also available. If you business name is going to be ABC Crafts, it is pretty crucial to your overall marketing effort that abccrafts.com (or the like) is available.
No business can operate effectively in the market without a web presence be it informational only or e-commerce. Now you may be thinking that it's not all that big of a deal to have a website since you plan to set up an Etsy shop or an ArtFire studio.
If you plan to grow your business, selling through an online marketplace such as Etsy should not be your end game. Even if you don't plan on immediately having your own website, I highly recommend you buy your domain name for future use. It's not that expensive and you'll be glad you did a few years (or even sooner) from now.
Writing a Tagline for Your Arts and Crafts Business
Don't forget to come up with a tagline for your arts or crafts business. A tagline is a short descriptive slogan or phrase about your business. A good tagline is memorable, witty and somewhat descriptive of your product.
Even better than just a tagline, combine a great tagline with a killer logo. A stellar example of this is Allstate Insurance Company's tagline line and logo.
The next article in this series discusses handling legal issues for your new arts or crafts business.