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Tuesday Tips - Naming Your Business

February 21, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

Tuesday Tips - Naming Your Business

Firmly Believing in Community Over Competition - "A rising tide lifts all ships" - JFK

Hello!!! We have been receiving a lot of messages, e-mails, posts, and telephone calls about mentoring, internships, shadowing, etc.  I try so very hard to get back to everyone, and would love to be able to sit down and talk with everyone about business, photography, marketing and so much more, but I sadly just do not have the time between my six kiddos and the business.  I am going to try to post to our blog weekly and tackle some of the most frequently asked questions!  I thought I would start off with something simple this week, but often overlooked, or not thought about... naming your business!  When starting a new business in an already heavily saturated industry, it is extremely important to think about your brand, marketing, and how to stand out from your competition! Here are just a few things to consider when selecting the name of your business:


(Please note that I am not an attorney, nor am I an accountant.  My discussions during Tuesday Tips will be based on my personal experiences as a business owner)

1.  Employees - Do you plan on having employees some day, or do you want to do this on your own?  If you are doing this on your own, using your own legal name is a great option, but having employees work for Joe Bob's Photography make not necessarily make sense, and rebranding after being established can sometimes be tricky.

2.  Trademarks - No matter which direction you go, make sure that your business name is not trademarked already.  You can check all of the legally registered trademarks in the United States here: https://www.uspto.gov/trademark

3.  State Requirements - In Pennsylvania, we are required to have unique names, meaning there cannot be two Loving Memories Photography & Design, LLC's in the state of Pennsylvania.  If you are operating business in the state of Pennsylvania, you are required by law to register your fictitious name, or you could be subject to being fined.  To check and see if the name you would like to use is available in Pennsylvania, you can search here:  https://www.corporations.pa.gov/search/corpsearch

A few things to consider when searching the states portal:

a.  You will not see Joe Bob's Photography on this list unless they are operating as an LLC or Corporation. 

b.  If you are a legal business and do not find your fictitious name on the state corporation website, follow the states recommendations to properly register your business name.  You can find more detailed information here: http://www.dos.pa.gov/BusinessCharities/Business/Resources/Pages/Fictitious-Names.aspx

Properly registering your business name will prevent others from using your business name, prevent you from being fined and will notify your clients that you are a legal, licensed, tax paying business in our state. 

4.  New businesses - If you are a new business and need help with this process, I would highly recommend consulting an attorney.  Meredith Allie is our attorney and specializes in family and business law!  Meredithallielaw.com/  She can assist you in starting your business, contracts, and more! Another option would be legalzoom.com  They offer all inclusive packages to start your business. 


Now that you have ideas for your business name, and you're ready to take that next step, stay tuned for the next Tuesday Tips - The Importance of Insurance!




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