Contact Us

Oregon Office:

Douglas D. Smith

22021 SW Sherwood Boulevard 

PO Box 1034

Sherwood, Oregon 97140-1034

Phone: (503) 840-0000


Utah Offices:

Bradley D. Smith

FranchiseSmith Utah, LLC

5508 West Kensington Circle

Highland, Utah 84003

Phone: (801) 615-1564


Douglas D. Smith

Franchise Smith, LLC

201 Red Pine Drive #4

Alpine, Utah 84004-5618

Phone: (503) 840-0000


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What's In A Name? - Picking the Right Name Can Make All the Difference

March 29, 2011
Today, a new client asked my advice about how to develop a memorable and protectable name for his exciting new franchise system. I think you will find my response helpful and informative:

The best and strongest and most protectable names for a business or franchise system are made-up, unusual or "coined" words such as Kodak, Exxon, Xerox.
The weakest and least protectable are geographic (NorthWest, New York, Teton, American, International, etc.) or descriptive (Running League, Grocery Store, Good Restaurant, etc.) Unusual descriptive names can work sometimes – for example the word “Maid” in a house cleaning service has become common (Merry Maids, American Maids, Molly Maids, etc.) however, “Maid My Day” is clever and workable, but still might be considered fairly weak. “Gee, it was one of those “maid” companies, just can’t remember which one.”
A good way to come up with a name is to imagine adding the word “brand” after the name and before what the brand describes: Kodak “brand” camera, Exxon “brand” gasoline, ____ “brand” running shoes. You would never consider a restaurant named Pizza “brand” pizza restaurant, so you should not try a running league called The Running League. You asked how the NBA NFL NCAA and MLB got away with weakly geographic and descriptive names. In part it is because they are so big, so well funded and so old. They have spent millions developing and protecting their names and still could not keep out interlopers such as [fill in the blank] _______Basketball Association, _________Football League, or Major League _______.

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