I’ve been brainstorming…
Thinking about how people will feel when interacting with my business; thinking about what I want this business to represent; pondering what else is out there and how I will grab a niche; thinking about my BRAND.
Using the dictionary, the thesaurus (both traditional and visual), polling others. (Note to special friends that have seen early versions of the business name: I didn’t go with my early, cute to me but offensive to some term!!)
No surprise to any of you that I like to make things happen. I am in action and moving – toward something great.
Cooking is a big part of this creative adventure.
I’ve been leaning toward “C,” the third letter of the alphabet (and according to my friend Carrie K, it has the most pleasing sound to our ears).
I narrowed in.
I researched my short list of names in the US Trademark and Patent’s online database, to make sure they weren’t already taken by someone else.
I then looked up a shorter list of names on Whois to ensure that the web addresses/domains were not already in use or purchased by someone else.
With that, I was ready to pounce. I registered my name with the Trademark office yesterday.
To those that are following my journey with an intent to perhaps start a business someday- it’s helpful before you register a trademark to know what types of business you may be conducting using the trademark name you are setting up. There is a searchable database for that HERE. I used Legal Zoom to prepare and submit the paperwork for the Trademark application. Since I am including two concepts – Education and Catering- I needed to apply for two types of goods/service. This step cost me about $900. The benefit of the Trademark is that my business name is protected- I have the exclusive right to use that name (and logo, if I had registered one) to conduct business in the areas of cooking and teaching. There will be a confirmation process, I’ll let you know when this is all official!
My next step was to “buy” the domains/website addresses that I will use with my new company. It’s pretty cheap to get domains, and I figured that as soon as anyone caught wind of my desired name (maybe through the Trademark application process, or some other public airing of the name)- that the price to buy my domain would go up. This is why I chose to apply for the Trademark and buy the domains on the same day.
Another note to people starting a business: after researching my options, I decided to use Godaddy to do this step- if you choose a different provider, make sure they are ICANN registered (ICANN was a cool find- it’s not necessary to work with them to do any of these steps, but if you’re interested in how the internet polices itself, check it out!). I purchased the domain I will use as my primary Business website, and 4 additional similar sites. I opted for a “Private” registration, which assures that my complete contact information is not published as the owner of the domains- which is a protection against lots of unwanted spam and correspondence. Purchasing the domains cost me about $85 for one year.
So what’s the name, you ask?
Catalyst = Initiates or Causes an important event to happen. A person or thing that precipitates a Change. A person whose talk, enthusiasm, or energy causes others to be more friendly, enthusiastic, or energetic!
Cooks = Can be a Noun or a Verb. In other words, can be People, or can be Making Food. In other words, can be ME & YOU and also can be CATERING.
For the next steps, I’ll be needing your help…. to be continued!