Sometimes picking a name for your business is as simple as snapping your fingers. Others, it can be a brain-racking process which gnaws on your psyche for days on end. Even more difficult is this when there are hundreds, THOUSANDS of other people in the country going into the same kind of business as yourself, like BBQ. Which can suck, as the name is one of the few things one can TRULY control and call their own without having to worry about annoying factors like costs, budget, local laws, or anything else affecting it. It’s the pivotal display of who we and our businesses ARE, the sense of self, and we want to make sure it’s the right one don’t we?
And now we have to make sure it doesn’t just achieve this, but hope that no one else is already using it AND it stands out from the crowd of other BBQ purveyors. Luckily for us, the masses of names to contend with also provides a cacophony of inspiration. Fun and creative names abound for one to look into, giving clues to what stands out while opening up your brain’s own ideas on a desired direction to go.
Whether it’s from distinct simplicity, clever word/pun play, or just a more fun and creative decision, the best ‘names’ make an immediate impact as we read them. Even when amongst a listing of other trucks, they’re usually the ones that make us briefly pause to consider. And in this business, when one has to compete with so many other bbq joints, catering gigs, and food trucks to be simply CONSIDERED as an option to cater a party [or other occasion], having a name that succeeds in this can help to turn those chances from nil to possible.
As an example, here’s a few BBQ-based businesses which ended up choosing some of the more fun and interesting names to be seen in the past year. Though I swear all the good names are being used by the competition teams; we had to cut back quite a few to give the restaurants and food trucks some attention. Besides being a long tradition of ANY ‘team-based-activities’ choosing the most pun-based and ridiculous identifiers as possible, it likely helps their personality to stand out more in the industry. To start getting your own creative juices flowing though, take a look at THESE successful entrepreneurs.
Little Miss BBQ – Arizona restaurant
Big Bad Wolf’s House of BBQ – Baltimore restaurant
Smoque BBQ – Chicago restaurant
Truck-U Barbecue – Las Vegas food truck
Bark and the Bite – Minnesota food truck
Oink n Moo – Dallas, Texas food truck
Meat Rushmore – Montana BBQ competition team
Church of Swinetology – Tennessee BBQ competition team. Apparently there’s a ‘Southern’ extension out in Carolina
Too Bad You’re my Cousin – South Carolina BBQ competition team
Second Hand Smoke – Texas BBQ competition team
So, you may ask, how can I make sure my business’ name, considering I don’t want to just stick with the standard but unexciting “’My Name Here’’s BBQ” formulae, stands out like those above?
For starters, list any and everything that stands out as something important you feel you would want to really express about the business. Family, personal experience, region of origin, favorite cooking technique/ingredients, preferred/specialty pork cut, catch phrases, or even just your particular attitude/personality.
Now that you’ve got these listed down, you can start thinking of ways to combine them into something that sticks. How exactly one chooses and goes about this, the particular ‘formulae for success,’ is ultimately up to them. It could be left serious, slightly joking, or based around some of the dumbest and most hilarious puns one can imagine. Don’t even have to do the whole ‘listing’ thing, one might just come up with something else pig/BBQ-related with no relation towards anything else. Whether you focus purely on 1-2 words with impact or combine into an intriguing full name, so long as you’re happy with the end result. Also, feel free to take cues from other businesses and teams around you; if a particular pattern works, either try to jump off on it OR do the exact opposite to stand out.
And obviously, one should always double check Google to make sure no one else is using that name before setting it in stone. But once you do, finally can you rest happily in the view of what will now be hanging above your head every day of the career. Whether it’s festooning the building of your restaurant, painted across a truck, or simply stamped on every catering business flyer being shipped and handed out to potential customers. Your ‘name’ will be there for all to see, representing everything that is you and the food so love.