Tag Archives: Frank Dekker

Help With Naming: Am I Green or Not?

I’m not sure of the answer to this one; it’s a good question. A man whose last name is Green saw my post here turning green from overuse and he asks:

I’m starting a small woodworking and furniture building shop and am looking for a name. It seems natural to use Green as it is my last name, however I don’t want to be lumped into just another green company.

My immediate reaction was:

Of course you should use your own name. It’s not just greening it up in your case, it’s authentic; it is your name. And if it resonates because it also implies natural and environmental, all the better. Overuse or not, those are both good qualities.

But then I thought some more about it. What if potential customers see Green in the name and assume greenwashing?What if, as time passes, green acquires negative meaning, becomes a diluted term like the term user-friendly in software?

So I asked some friends in Twitter, and got some good answers very fast. You can see those answers here, and, by the way, that link in one of the tweets goes to Smart Industries, which was founded by Gordon Smart in 1963, and is strong and healthy.

So – and this is what makes this a good question – there is no easy and obvious answer to this one. Like so many things in business, it depends.

By the way, those smart and helpful people who answered in Twitter, should you want to follow them, are @rieva (Rieva Lesonsky), @smallbizlady (Melinda Emerson), @timburks (Tim Burks), and @frankdekker (Frank Dekker). Thanks.