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Finding the right name for your startup is not always the easiest thing to do. No matter how creative you or others in your team are, there are just too many factors at play here to make it a walk in the park. 

Don’t worry though, by the time you’re done reading this article, you’ll have developed a fair bit of an idea about how to approach naming your startup, as well as all the things you must absolutely avoid. 

For your convenience, we’re going to make it short and crisp. Also, note that everything you’re going to read below is practices recommended by Bahrain’s Ministry of Industry, Commerce & Tourism. So there’s every chance that you will have a much easier time naming your upcoming venture by following this simple set of protocols. 

6 tips to find the best name for your startup

1. Shortlist a few unique names

It might sound pretty obvious in hindsight, but having a unique and innovative name can do wonders in helping your startup stand out in the competition. The name you choose shouldn’t be too bland or a cliche and neither should it be overly complicated. Be creative, but also make it a point to make it a catchy name that easily leaves a positive impression on your target audience.

Ideally, you should shortlist at least 2-3 names to ensure that at least one of them meets all of the following criteria. 

2. Make sure you’re not plagiarizing

One reason why most startup owners struggle to find the right name for their startups is that there is a very good possibility that the names they come up with are already in use — if not in Bahrain, but somewhere else in the region, or maybe elsewhere in the world.

For legal and practical reasons, it’s in your best interest to make sure that the names you pick are not trademarked and in use by another entity. Even copying from an international brand without an active presence in the Kingdom is not a good idea.

3. Go for an Arabic name when possible

This rule is not carved in stone and you may always choose to ignore it if you have other better ideas in mind from the perspective of your upcoming venture. However, it is generally seen that most consumers in the GCC region usually have a soft spot for brands with Arabic names.

Even if you want to go along with a name in a foreign language such as English, it is always advisable to pick one that can be easily translated into Arabic. 

4. Stay out of Controversies

This is perhaps the most important aspect you can not afford to overlook at any cost if you’re hoping for a smooth take-off for your startup. The negative repercussions of having a bland or not-so-unique name can still be overcome relatively easily by convincing customers about the superiority of your products and services through other legit means.

However, choosing a name — intentionally or unintentionally — that violates public morals, customs, tradition or religious beliefs, is a strict no-go zone. 

5. Try associating the name with your company’s products and values

It’s actually more of an extension of the first tip above and might require some additional creativity to pack all that info in a word or two. But if you pull it off — again, uniquely and innovatively — it will definitely be a huge advantage. 

In any case, you wouldn’t want to name your cutting-edge FinTech startup Epic Manama Karak or something of that sort, would you? It should ideally be something that gives your target customers an idea about what your company is all about right on the first look.

6. No political stuff, please

Having a political connotation in the name is a thing that should remain exclusively in the domains of political parties and cause-driven activist organizations. As a commercial entity, your primary goal is to develop a market for your startup. While it’s okay to have your brand in tune with the values you hold dear, mixing politics blatantly with the brand name is something Bahrain’s MoICT strictly advises against. 

So, those are in brief some of the important factors you should consider before naming your startup in Bahrain. In case you have any additional queries, feel free to reach out to StartUp Bahrain using our social media platforms on Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter, or Like us on Facebook.

Jenan Al-Mukharriq

Jenan Al-Mukharriq

A highly driven organizing member of the StartUp Bahrain ecosystem. And a Project Manager at Matter In Hand with a passion for content creation and empowering communities.