When Should Start Up Companies Start Thinking about Branding?
From our experience, most start-ups will turn to a branding agency towards the end stage of their product development almost a last minute resort before the launch of the product.
Why is it that most “creative” minds in start-ups are exceptionally technical oriented that too often heavily relying on technical platforms whether social media, internet or other digital platform to deliver high speed results, just as expected from technology.
The truth is, in the real world sometimes cruel world of start-up companies, where the race for funding and recognition rule, it’s clear that creating a branding strategy that tells your story clearly, with a definite differentiation factors, with added values to management and investors should be part of the company’s strategy.
So why do start-ups refrain from creating early stage branding strategy?
· They believe the process is too costly
· They rely on their social-media skills (at worse “we can outsource a social-media manager”)
· They’re concerned about thinking process that takes too much time and resources
· Believe that branding process is irrelevant for first stage start-ups
· Since most start-up founders stem from engineering and sciences professionals, they crave for measurable procedures and processes; something that branding delivers only over time.
So when do you need to start thinking about branding?
“The truth is star-up companies’ need branding the moment they start seeking for funding sources in order to implement their ideas. No matter how far fetch the brand is” says CEO of LA BrandCulture, Eric Pinckert, “because everybody knows that a killer application or a jaw dropping solutions is not enough to spread the word around”.
Pinckert suggest starting by branding the company’s staff: name, title, something unique about the person, alongside a picture of course preferably with a smile. The reason for this is because investors look for reliability and personal relations. Staff introduction is the first step to connecting personally with investors.
On the other hand, Aron Shapiro, CEO of HUGE global branding believes a branding campaign will be successful only if it promotes a successful product and not less; a product that has completed early stages of thinking process, beta sites and extensive QA. In other words think about your product. If the product is good “they will come”. Shapiro believes that companies such as Google, Instagram, Facebook and more have become conglomerates simply because they offered products that people use. These companies have made a global name for themselves through their products. With a lot of product awareness and without huge branding budgets; public relations, viral marketing and a few recommendations from reliable people, that’s all it took for these companies to become who they are today.
Branding a Start-Up Company, How is it done?
Whether branding at early stage or at a later stage, the path is full of good intentions and great mistakes. A lot has been discussed in terms of how a brand is so much more than just a “logo”, and how essential and critical part branding process is of a company’s brand.
How to Safely Cross the Sea of Choices?
You have a story. The world needs to know about it.
Since your company has a product and since the world needs to know about this product, a brand concentrates all requires steps into a structured process that will serve as the foundation for all marketing activities and efforts from that point on. This strategy will include: defining the company and the product, features, added-values, goals, targets and all the many ways the achieve those.
Understanding Your Market and Environment
It’s time to role-up your sleeves and start researching the competition, targeted audience, preferences, wishes, the alternatives, strengths and weaknesses, added-values, business opportunities and what to avoid at all cost. There is no price for solid information and the value of a good research is priceless.
Be Clear. Be Precise. Repeat.
If you can’t convey the added-value of your product and what sets it apart why would people choose it? A branding process, done correctly, will recognize the unique added-values and proposition of your company and product will lock it and spread the word. This with a clear and precise message, clean of all noise and imitation and will speak effectively to your targeted audience.
And Now We Can Move to the Logo (and a few other things)
Think about Nike’s icon. Perhaps even about the simple naïve orange square of “Orange”. Is there a higher goal than a recognized logo? Your visual presence has a meaning. The choices from color palette, font, website, and graphics all play a role. To convey the unique verbal messages associated with your company. This is the most effective way to convey your brand to targeted audience that has not heard of you yet.
>…….And this is what we do at TitanBrandWise. Let us help you shine through and maximize your brand for you.