How to Launch a Brand – Design & Startup

Last Updated on January 13th, 2020

So, you are ready to launch your brand! Well, considering all the competition and modern day challenges, it may not be easy but it’s worth it.

With the right approach, strategic vision and good launch strategy; nothing is going to stop you and your business to thrive on.

I’ve launched a few successful brands myself and I want to share the secrets of successful brand launch with you. The good news is that I plan to keep this article alive and always updated, so make sure to come back every month to see updated versions.

Here are the steps you need to follow for successful brand launch.

Brand Value Proposition

“Brand Value Proposition” is the first stepping stone in a business launch. This is the statement used to summarize why a consumer should buy your product or services. Without this essential element, it would be difficult for you to take a good start.

A brand value proposition is the promise of value that you deliver or communicate to a plausible buyer. This concept, if implemented successfully, can be the key point of success for your business.

Almost every effective brand has a primary value proposition which is aimed to drive everything the brand promotes. Some companies also have a secondary value proposition, but we’ll discuss that later.

Coming back to the point, here’s the big question – How to bring value to the market? To answer this, I have three key points to share with you:

1- Primary Focus on the product

In order to deliver the best value in the market, your primary focus should be on product leadership. Since your product/ service is new and unique, it is likely to cost more than those of your competition. That’s why you need to highlight exceptional features and superiority.

2- Use innovation

Thinking out of the box and using all the benefits of technology, you can work on lowering the cost. Operational excellence is a great way to beat your competitors. With modern technology and better manufacturing processes, you will definitely stay one step ahead in the game.

3- Sell a good relationship

To solve your customers’ problems and provide them with the best set of services should be your top priority. Once you’re able to win their trust and form a good relationship with your customers, you’ll be on the road to success.

Practically, it’s difficult to focus on all three value propositions at once. It is kind of impossible to bring something in the market, which is the;

  • Best in the market
  • Cheapest in the market
  • Most comprehensive in the market

That’s why it is advisable to focus on one or two values at first. The most important factor is to understand how you deliver value to the market. If you are able to do that, it’ll help you to maintain a good balance among pricing, distribution, marketing and other aspects of your product/service.

Now let’s move to the next important stage, which is picking the right name for your brand.

Picking the right brand name for your business

What’s meant by a brand name?

Your brand name or title is the term that distinguishes your product or service from those of others. It strengthens the values that the brand provides. That’s why great emphasis is put on the right selection of a brand name.

How do I choose a name for my brand?

Selection of your brand name largely depends on the industry you work in and how you want to represent yourself in the market. Here are a few options:

  • Describe what you do (Transportation Security Administration)
  • Use the founder/ inventor’s name (Abbott Laboratories)
  • Describe an experience or image (Sprint)
  • Take a word out of context (Apple)
  • Make up a word (Google)

However, it is important to decide what your name should mean and represent. You need to consider all the pros and cons before locking the final decision.

What’s the importance of naming your brand?

Giving a name to your brand is mandatory because that’s how the customers will know about your company. Choosing a good name will create a positive impression and open doors for new customers. A poor name, on the other hand, will exactly do the opposite.

The selection of the name is a tricky process. It is not as easy as it seems. The reason for that is – large number of businesses that already exist. Hence, you will come to know that most of the names have already be taken.

Infringing on copyright is surely not a thing you want to get into as you don’t want to waste a lot of money and time in lawsuits.

Next up, you will also have the need to secure a domain name that matches your brand name. Internet marketing is very important but securing the desired URL is a rock hard challenge these days. According to research, 98% of words in the dictionary have already been registered as domain names.

Nevertheless, don’t let these challenges stop you from finding the best name you can – There’s a lot at stake.

Benefits of a good brand name

  • It reinforces the value proposition
  • Strengthens your position in the market
  • Shows the brand essence and its values
  • Builds a great reputation for your band

Disadvantages of a poor name

  • People lose interest and the brand suffers
  • A poor name disapproves the hard work you do
  • It badly affects your brand value proposition
  • It limits the opportunities.

Conclusion

You are going to launch a new company, so the brand name is your asset that can really make a great impact. Leave your personal charm aside and pick a name that really suits your product or service. Keep the brand value proposition in your mind and perceive it from a customer’s view.

Bottom Line

Pick a brand name which is unique and it matches the core values of your brand. In the next step, we’ll discuss the process of creating a visual identity for your brand.

Creating a Visual Brand Identity

To build a strong customer base, you need to take next step in the procedure. After securing your brand name, you need to focus all your attention on giving your brand a face.

The Face of your Brand

A logo design serves as the face of your brand and it is a very important marketing tool. In many cases, a logo design is the only conveyor of your brand values to general customers. That’s why you should know the characteristics a logo must have, in order to do effective communication. Here are the few key features of a good logo:

  • Timeless
  • Memorable
  • Simple
  • Meaningful
  • Works without colors

As I said earlier, these are just a few qualities but if your brand mark is designed in accordance with them, you are good in the game. Your logo design will have an immediate impact and catch the viewer’s attention.

Do you remember the last time when someone handed you over a business card with a fantastic identity mark? Did you feel the urge to turn it over and take a closer look? Did it stir up your curiosity and you asked about it? If it did – it was a good logo.

We at FullStop® keep all these points in mind while creating robust brand identities. If you need help, you may choose to check out our services.

No Holds Barred – Use Stationary Options

After nailing an impressive logo design, you need to see every prospect of your business communication. No holds barred – is the message I want to convey to you

Many businesses spend a fortune on amazing brand identities and business cards, but somehow overlook the other options available.

Office stationary e.g. invoices, letterhead, a proposal template, and email signature are the items seen by prospects more often. You can make a great impression using these smart options.

On the other hand, when an email template is customized with unusual design or font, it simply ruins your professional image – and conveys a far different impression to the customer.

Your corporate identity is completed when you cover everything that includes:

  • Logo or contact information
  • Business cards
  • Envelopes
  • Letterhead
  • Invoices/statements
  • Memos
  • Signage
  • Promotional items
  • Mailing labels
  • Email templates & signatures
  • Fax covers
  • Proposal/quote templates

Moreover, each element in your identity should use the same fonts, colors, and layout. The design itself may not be incredibly important unless you’re in a creative field, but consistency and professionalism make an impression. In many cases it may be the first impression, so why not make a good one?

Moving forward, we’ll talk about your website and online presence!

PS: If you need help with creating an awesome logo design and corporate identity, check out our services.

Website and Online Presence

In today’s modern world, trends have largely changed. Majority of people have the habit to go online to research companies and products. So, having a website for your valuable business is also one of the “Must Haves”.

A business website is potentially the most powerful sales & marketing tool, which adds great value to your business.

Importance of a Website

A website is basically the portfolio of a company, which has all information about a company e.g. mission, values, products/services, plans, and offers. It acts as an interactive brochure that is viewed by visitors on daily basis. If the content is rich and appealing, it can convert the visitors into prospects and customers.

That is the kind of an important role which a good website plays to uplift a business. You will see it as a big factor in contributing to the overall growth of your company.

What should a good website offer?

A website deserves to be labeled as good if it helps to;

  • Deliver information about your products & services in a compelling way
  • Build brand awareness
  • Generate Leads
  • Convert sales
  • Nurture existing leads and move them closer to purchase
  • Process orders, cross- and up-sell, and run special promotions
  • Communicate with existing customers and distribution channels
  • Generate publicity

You need to keep all these points in your head while having a website designed. It should have marketing functionality and ability to communicate effectively with the target audience.

In this field, we pride ourselves on making the best websites. You can ask FullStop® for all the help and guidance to make an effective website design for your brand.

What’s the catch?

Designing a good website with broad and lucrative marketing capabilities is no doubt a challenging task. Not all business sites cover everything said here. Generally, they fall into three categories:

  • Good sites
  • Average sites
  • Poor websites

1 – In the best scenario, a site acts more than a brochure. It generates leads and increases the sale. With the help of interesting content and good marketing functionality, it grabs full attention of visitors. It can be used for a number of marketing campaigns:

  • Search
  • Email
  • Webinar
  • On-going communications
  • Publicity

In order to convert traffic into prospects, you can quickly create landing pages for campaigns.

2 – In this case, the website offers only basic information. It may have newsletters and a few press releases, but not engaging content. The site has an average turnout and has a dire need for improvement. Website redesign is advised to gain more marketing power. Such a website can be improved by focusing on content and better functionality.

3 – It is the worst case when a site works against the brand. It happens when it lacks the brand value proposition. It might have other problems such as bad design or lack of relevant content and unnecessary junk. All these factors push the brand behind and competitors take full advantage of the situation.

How to cope with all the trouble?

In order to eradicate the problem first, we need to figure out whether the site will be used for online selling or not. Normally, there are two types of websites:

  • Static Websites
  • Online Stores/ E-Commerce

Static Website

A static website, which is not used to sell online, can be improved by working in these areas:

1 – Customize your site theme in accordance with your brand needs. However, you’d be able to do that if you’re not using a free website. The idea of having a free website available through some cheap hosting companies is not a strong suit for your good brand anyway.

2 – Put up the images of your products. Make sure you have the high-quality photos of your products, otherwise it won’t make a good impression. Low-quality content will have a negative impact – avoid it at all costs.

3 – Thirdly, also use royalty-free stock images in web design. Make it clear to your web designer to not use any photos with proprietary rights of someone else. It can lead you to a lot of trouble.

4 – Get a Content Management System (CMS) agreement from your hosting so that you can manage and edit the site when there is a need. You can update new information or post some content to keep it fresh. If you don’t sign a CMS, you will have to bear extra costs going back to the design firm or developer.

Online Store/ E-Commerce

If you run an online store or e-commerce website, here are the few pointers to be taken into consideration:

1 – You need to go to a site and online store that comes with absolute ownership. You can avail a few online solutions where the store sits on the proprietary hosting system but various e-commerce modules can be linked.

Later on, if you decide to move your website to a different hosting provider it won’t be easy. You can move the static pages and design, but not the store. However, you can export all your products and orders to import them back on new platform if it permits.

2 – There is another thing to be careful of. It’s the percentage that your eCommerce store provider charges. It’s usually nominal at the start but as the sales go up, some of the store providers start charging up to 10% of every sale which is very high. Settle this at the beginning of your deal.

3 – Securing a payment gateway e.g. PayPal is also advisable. You can look for a service that charges relatively low. If you decide on PAYPAL business account, your online store developer can link it to the website to accept credit card payments. Stripe is another option for the payment gateway. The choice is entirely yours.

4 – Once you have nailed down the online store, check social media integration. You can share your products and accessories on different social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Google+.

Follow the guidelines and stay on the road of success. In the next run, we’ll focus on social media setup and strategies.

Social Media Setup & Strategies

Social media marketing holds great significance to conquer business goals. Presumably, everyone is engaged with social media most of the time. So, you need to act smartly and catch this opportunity, in order to grow your business.

What Can Social Media Do for Your Business?

Making the right use of this powerful tool, you can do a lot of magic. Social media can help you attract more customers and increase the sale figures. Moreover, you can use social media to:

  • Build brand awareness
  • Establish thought leadership
  • Gather market research
  • Launch promotions
  • Distribute news
  • Generate Leads
  • Interact directly with customers and the market
  • Find out how the market perceives you
  • Monitor competitors
  • Build links
  • Connect with thought-leaders
  • Facilitate sales

Joining social media won’t cost you anything as it’s free, but making it effective will probably have some cost. You might need to hire the services of a professional graphic designer, content writer, somebody to monitor and respond to user requests. With the help of a complete team, your effectiveness will be 10 times better.

Nevertheless, many business owners start using social media without proper planning and commitment, which leads them to sheer disappointment and failure. I would like to highlight an important aspect here that social media works really good for certain types of goals, not for everything.

A wrong strategy will affect your brand’s reputation, which is not a good thing. Come up with a solid plan that can help you achieve your goals.

Dark Side of Social Media

So far, we have talked about the advantages of social media but it has a dark side as well. Once you share something on social media, you lose control of it. Anybody can have any kind of a comment or remark on it. You can’t control how people speak about your company. An unhappy customer can generate a lot of buzz, which will be viewed by ‘God knows’ how many people before you settle the issue. So, you’ve got to be very careful while putting something on social media. Make sure it’s good stuff that works in your favor.

After accomplishing the goals listed above, you also need to work on brand marketing and promotion.

Brand Publicity – Brand Marketing & Promotion

Publicity is the promotional communication about a company. It is extremely valuable in creating a great image and awareness for your brand, product or service. The fun part is, this form of mass communication is not paid by the organization benefiting from it.

Publicity comes from news stories, reviews, reporters, and journalists. For instance, if there is a mention of your product/ service in a newspaper or on TV, it can reach masses and people will get to know about your brand.

You may have experienced the urge to learn about certain products or services after reading about it. Or heard a company official deliver a speech and found yourself asking about the company later on!

Various Forms of Publicity

Publicity has many different forms depending on the mediums available. It includes:

  • News stories and interviews in trade journals, industry sites, newspapers, magazines, etc.
  • “Expert” quotes in a story written by a journalist or blogger
  • Self-authored stories published on websites or in industry publications
  • Speaking engagements

Benefits of Publicity

Publicity is a great marketing strategy and it benefits the company in a number of ways. Let me list down a few here:

  • It builds awareness about your brand, products or services, expertise and people
  • Drives prospects to your website
  • Drives event attendance or participation in a promotion
  • Educates the market about problems your company can solve
  • Creates an ongoing dialogue with the market

How to publicize your Brand?

You should know that publicity is not about luck. It is about investing in a good Public Relations Program, which will bring a good Return on Investment (ROI) over time.

You need to create newsworthy stories, which have engaging content. People will learn about the unique problem-solving techniques and ways you practice and promote.

If news-stories is not your forte, you can use a different approach. Support some charity work and public welfare, which will raise your visibility. Other than that, you update news on your website; it will improve your search engine ranking and the potential customers will get to see what you’re doing.

You can also follow these steps to promote and market your brand:

  • Work out who your target market is
  • Figure out your customers’ buyer personas for increased sales
  • Reach into your customers’ worldview

Online Marketing

Online marketing is the best solution for startups with budget constraints. You can effectively spread the word about your good service/ product using online marketing. At the same time, you can make good use of offline marketing by generating some good ideas. If you manage to use both online and offline marketing, your brand will definitely shine out and prosper.

For further help, you can always contact us for a free consultation.

  • A Picture of Waqas D.

    Waqas D.

Waqas D. is the co-founder of the branding and website agency, FullStop™. He supercharges brands by crafting memorable logos, brand identities and engaging websites. Besides thousands of startups and medium-size businesses, FullStop has worked with likes of Microsoft & L’Oréal. View our portfolio or get in touch.

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