A strong brand can’t save a company that has terrible products or services, but some of the best startups have failed due to ignoring their brand or improperly building it.
Startups work tirelessly on building the best app, website or other offerings, but often don’t fully understand the importance of branding from day one. The selling process begins with your brand. You can’t just sell your product, you need to sell your team, the pain of the problem you are solving, why your audience should care about you, and much more.
According to Entrepreneur, “your brand is your promise to your customer. It tells them what they can expect from your products and services, and it differentiates your offering from that of your competitors. Your brand is derived from who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be.”
“YOUR BRAND IS DERIVED FROM WHO YOU ARE”
As a startup trying to compete in a crowded market, you lack an identity. You don’t have years of experiences and relationships with customers that you can build marketing efforts and promotions around. Your brand doesn’t have any legs to stand on – this is where you come in. The “who” isn’t your business, it’s YOU – the founder or founders. As Greg Shugar states in Your Brand Should Be an Extension of Yourself, “Simply stated, your brand should be an extension of yourself.”
Greg goes on to explain that by going through traditional practices, and the methods that other businesses use for branding may have a negative effect on your business. “Because successful branding as a startup requires you to do something completely unique and different than everyone else. There is quite simply no other way to get noticed coming out of the gate. So the approach of doing what everyone else is doing is quite possibly the worst thing you can do from a branding perspective,” says Shugar.
HERE’S WHERE CONTENT COMES IN!
Content is how your audience will connect with you, and what will set you apart. It’s the proof behind your brand that’s difficult to get out to your target market in any other way. Providing content early and consistently will give people an instant feel for your brand and allow them to grow with you. They will be receiving this information directly from you instead of other media outlets, your competitors, or others.
Start by creating a blog post about why your company exists and why the founders are passionate about it. By giving your story, you’re giving early adopters something to connect with and helping out your marketing and SEO efforts by providing searchable content to build your organic rankings.
Ignoring content is like creating a dating profile on a matchmaker site without any information, just a picture. You might have a great offering, but if your intended market can’t connect with you through content immediately, they may never give you a chance.
Start with content to build your brand!