October 03, 2020
Naming your business is one of the most nerve-wracking items on a founder’s to-do list. If you (like me) are a frequent listener of the NPR podcast “How I Built This”, you’ll know that this is something a lot of founders experience. On the tactical side of things, it can be difficult to find available domain names (or finding a business name that hasn’t already been trademarked.) Selecting a name for your online business can be an emotionally-charged task. While it’s only one decision, it feels like one that could make or break the success of your business.
From the beginning, The Scrunchie Club was created to fill a need. As a longtime scrunchie enthusiast, I had been shopping for some new ones to add to my collection, looking at all your typical big box retailers. After looking at a few different stores, I felt frustrated when I couldn’t find any options that spoke to my interests and personality. Here I was, standing in the hair accessories aisle of Target, feeling invisible. I was looking for a brand to see me, and recognize the kind of life I wanted to live - one where I utilized my clothing and hair accessories to express myself.
This moment—a feeling that grew into the idea for my business— is why cherishing what makes us unique is at the core of our brand. We’re all weird, and that deserves to be celebrated. Within the uncertainty of starting a business from scratch, this was something I held close.
As my female founder dreams continued to grow over the coming weeks, I quickly realized that I wanted the brand to acknowledge the optimism and wonder of childhood. For me, that means the joy and innocence of the 1990s. My time daydreaming allowed me to have a clear vision of how I wanted this brand to make people feel - and that’s the feeling I followed as I moved into the brainstorming phase.
To brainstorm business name ideas, I took pen to paper, writing down everything I had been storing in the back of my brain and whatever came to mind, not going back to reassess anything until I had a full list. “The Scrunchie Club” was written down in the beginning stages - it might’ve even been on the list that first day. And the domain was available! I quickly scooped it up, but it didn’t feel real at first. “Maybe I’ll think of something better,” I told myself.
The longer I sat on it, the more the name felt like the perfect fit for the feeling I hoped our customers would have when they wore our scrunchies— like they were a part of something bigger. Sometimes people ask me “how do I become a part of The Scrunchie Club?” And if you’re asking, the answer is simple: you already are!
As an added bonus, The Babysitter’s Club movie was a favorite of mine during sleepovers as a kid. Even thinking back on the movie now, it’s wonderful how the girls approached friendship and new adventures. There were so many tv shows and movies trying to pull us out of childhood, but The Babysitter’s Club was different. (By the way, if you haven’t watched the Netflix reboot, it’s a wonderful extension of the 1995 movie, while still feeling current. Highly recommended!)
That same spirit of adventure and pure enthusiasm is something I want The Scrunchie Club to hold close in the years to come. “Cool girls” we are not.
And here’s the truth - I’m not sure that The Scrunchie Club will be our name forever. While I love how The Scrunchie Club evokes the sense of belonging I was looking for in Target that day (andthe name clearly states what we sell), I worry that it’s limiting in the long term. The small businesses that grow and succeed are the ones that are comfortable with pivoting and trying new things. I didn’t know everything on day one, and I surely don’t know everything now. As we grow, we’ll need to evolve, but I know that these core values will be an important part of wherever we go next.