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This is a UX question as the brand name initially (=when unknown) diverges a first feeling about a company.

We have a Slovak company that is has what a single keyword about what we are doing inside it's name in the Slovak language.

The keyword is also used in our Slovak domain name and as far as I know the word is specific enough and is free in other languages.

The question is if we should re-brand to an foreign (=English) name or keep using our local brand name and push it to foreign markets (with the risk of the word being mis-written).

Can you share any case studies about brand names?

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    This is quite literally an English or Marketing question as you are asking about how to name your company using a specific voice or tone that will work in localized context. – Pdxd Mar 12 '14 at 19:17
  • While brand strategy can certainly be a part of UX, as Pxdx states, it's really the domain of marketing and design. Might be worth asking on graphicdesign.se – DA01 Mar 12 '14 at 19:46
  • True, it's also a marketing design question - but having a good brand name that can be easily remembered and used later to acces your service is UX - it's like naming a button - the right words get you more clicks and more conversions. – Marek Andreánsky Mar 12 '14 at 20:10
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There have been cases of companies which have re-branded their names in local markets to reach out to new customers so that they can relate to the brand in the local language. To quote this article

It is true that when the original brand names are short and simple, it is sometimes a good choice to keep them as is instead of translating them. Companies like Sony, Google, Intel, they have kept the same name in multiple countries. But as each country, culture and language is beautiful and unique in its own way, it will be incorrect to assume the same name will be appropriate or the best options for all target locales. Some of the best examples are companies such as Coca-Cola, Sprite, and PizzaHut branding localized into Chinese.

The Chinese branding for Coca-Cola is 可口可樂 (Simplified Chinese is 可口可乐 ) The direct translation for the first two characters 可口 is "delicious". The last two characters "可樂" mean "able to enjoy". In addition, this term has become official translation for "Coke" for all brands. This great branding localization not only has positive meaning, but just like its original brand name, is easy to pronounce and hard to forget. This branding also enhances their advertising effectiveness and tagline creativity. Another great example is "Sprite". Its Chinese name is "雪碧" (Traditional and Simplified Chinese share identical characters). "雪" means "snow", and "碧" is either an adjective or noun for blue or blue-green. This combination brings the feeling of icy-coldness and freshness, and the meaning of "碧" also resonates for its green packaging. The pronunciation of the Chinese brand is also very similar to the English name.

I also recommend looking at this excellent but hilarious article about some brand names which dont translate well. To quote a part of the article

For example, an Iranian company named Paxan Corp. currently produces a line of soaps and detergents under the name "Barf." This word has a positive and clean meaning of "snow" in Iran, but what English speaker would ever choose to use a cleaning product with this brand? Likewise, if the Japanese sports drink "Pocari Sweat" were exported to the United States, how many English speakers would choose to drink "Sweat"?

I also recommend looking at this interesting case study where it looks at the impact of rebranding your name with the country as a prefix (e.g. Microsoft to Microsoft China)

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