We get asked a lot of questions – how much time should I be spending on marketing, should I be on Pinterest, do you do email content? But by far, the most asked question over the past four and a half years, without a doubt, is about our company name.
What is Padua? Is it the place in Italy? Why Padua Communications?
When I first set up the company, sorting the company name was easy. In fact I had owned the URLs for all the domain names for some years beforehand. It was a gut instinct because the name Padua meant a lot to me. On my mum’s side of the family, Padua (the place in Italy) is the place where Saint Anthony is buried and he is our family saint. Because of this, my first house was called Padua, my mum and dad have owned houses called both Padua and St Anthony’s, and my grandparent’s family home in Glasgow was also called Padua. The reason I chose the name was because partially I’m sentimental but also when you start a business, it is the support from those around you including family and friends along with blind faith, that gets you going.
But the story of St Anthony also has something else to offer. When the coffin containing the Saint’s remains was opened for the first time years after his death, it was a great surprise to see his tongue in tact, although the rest of his body had decayed. At the basilica in Padua today, there are chapels, which contain relics of St. Anthony and the Saint’s tongue is still on show along with his jaw and the cartilage of the larynx. Although it is usually among the first parts to disintegrate after death, more than 770 years have passed since St. Anthony died and so the story of his tongue is a miracle and unique in history. There is simply no medical evidence for the lack of decay. All of the body parts that have miraculously survived are used in speech, and the story behind the preservation of St Anthony’s voice box is that he never uttered a bad word. It seemed quite fitting to choose an icon of pure communication when we set up our content and communications agency, where we aim to do this for our clients.
The story of St Anthony always means that when someone asks me about the company name, I have a story to tell – in fact sometimes several – and this is an added bonus when at a networking event, where you are meeting new people and doing introductions for the first time. It also has tended to mean that people remember me and the company name because of this story.
So if you are thinking about choosing a company name, here are my top tips:
- Make it meaningful to you
- Sometimes an unusual name is the thing that can start conversations
- Craft your story about why you chose that name over others and share it when people ask
- Be honest – not everyone gets Catholics and I’m not the most religious person but our story still says a lot about me as a person
- When you’ve chosen your name, try it out on friends and family. It can sometimes be the tipping point of them beginning to believe in you and what you can achieve!
Incidentally it’s St Anthony’s feast day on the 13th of June and you can find out more about him and the Basilica here.