4 ways that branding can positively impact start-up success:
1. Have a great name!
a. When there is a terrible name…
Problems with names: no one can say your name (hard to pronounce), you don’t own domains or social handles, your name is used by other companies (esp. in your domain), etc.
Make your names easy to spell, say & remember, has no existing associations that could confuse, avoids trademark infringement, what the company does has no problematic overlaps, the .com and social media accounts are owned by you, has few or no Google search results, biases toward brand able.
2. 90% is OK.
a. Overvaluing First Exposure
Typical startup myths: make a great product, get some press, get customers.But where people do to learn is from online lists, talking to others, using existing solutions, etc. If you only play at first exposure and/or decision time, it won’t work well.
Step 1: get known and trusted by your audience.
Step 2: grow a presence across the channels they use to find solutions for what your product does.
Step 3: be visible throughout their discovery, consideration, and decision processes.
3. Focus on branding
a. Ignoring Brand
A brand is a promise that is ideally trigged when you need the solution you offer. Brand marketing reminds you of the brand’s existence, and nudges you to use the brand at the right time. Before you can brand, you need a promise: we provide, we evoke feelings, we remind you of, we share values of … Everything should subtly reinforce your message.
4. Market prior to Launch
a. Saving Marketing Until Launch
Seek out marketing channels & tactics at the intersection of: areas of personal passion & interest, areas where you can provide unique value to your audience, and areas the reach your potential customers and their influencers. Think about what marketing channels fits this criteria: blogs, forums, social media, video channels, events, etc. Invest in 2-3 tactics long before you launch a product. So when you do, there’s a pre-existing community that wants to support & amplify you.