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Old October 9th, 2008, 03:06 AM
Kalkail's Avatar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: New York City
Posts: 348
Default Re: Name our Hookah Bar

The thing about naming retail stores (from a retailer/brander perspective) is that you want to be identifiable, searchable (SEO is the cat's pajamas) and relatable. Someone walking by when you are open needs to get lured in, get curious when you are closed, and be able to remember the name when telling their friends about it far and away from your brick and mortar. Also if you are opening a shop/bar but sighting down expansion (say shops in Cleveland, Kent and Columbus... hell even Cincinnati) then you need a name that will at the very least transcend the state.

What kind of crowd do you want to appeal to? If you are traditionalists looking to keep the 'old ways' then you want something that will identify with that clientele. If you are looking to market to a younger, collegiate set then pander to that. With that in mind don't pick something that will look dated in five years. Look at all the 'Businessname2000' that are still around for proof of how that can impact how a business is perceived.

Pick a name that says Hookah or Smoke in the title. There's no other way around that one. Make sure no one else has it. Secure the domain name before you incorporate. When you incorporate do not incorporate with the name of the retail store, use something else and add an 'Operating As' to the documentation. That way if you want to split off or franchise down the line it makes it much easier and less costly. I know of a store called Dragon's Den that gets mistaken for a Chinese Food restaurant and gets tons of misdirected calls around dinner time wasting staff resources and money. Now with the Japanese/BBC show it's not getting any easier. so keep that in mind, if your shop name is similar to a Middle Eastern restaurant expect wrong numbers.

Oh one more thing, sticky names are some of the best and alliteration is powerful. I guess that is two things.

That stated here are my suggestions:

Rock and Roll Hookah (if you decide to start in Cleveland and the name will travel well)
High Street Hookah (if you decide to open in Columbus and on said street)
Smoking Coventry (if you are setting up in that area and don't plan to expand)
Oohio Smoke
Ohiookah Smoke
Buckeye Smoke
Coals and Bowls

Good luck on your endeavor!

Note: I know Ohio rather well (former Cleveland resident) let me know when you set up and I'll be sure to pop in when I am there on business next.
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