The 3 Essentials of Startup Branding
One of the biggest missteps of many startups is how to position their image. The best way startups can position themselves, stand out and create a distinct identity is through company branding. While most startups get their branding wrong, a few who get it right often bump on it or work with a carefully crafted strategy.
In the age of technology, the Internet, and information sharing, three elements define a brand and are crucial to building and positioning a startup brand:
- A name
- A logo
- A website
Branding begins with a name. Your business’ name will be featured everywhere else. It’s the first point of reference and statement of what the business represents to customers, employees, competitors, and other stakeholders. This makes it the single most essential first component of a brand. For instance, since 60% of small business owners use business cards for their business progression, and the card usually has your name and the business’s name, imagine what having a weak name on your card does to your business.
A good name will allow people to remember you and what you offer. Furthermore, when creating a website domain, most businesses prefer to use the exact same name, which makes the name inspiration for the website. For example, the domain https://thedesigninspiration.com/ is inspired by the business name: ‘The Design Inspiration.’
A logo can be a symbol or design that identifies or defines what you offer — products and services. Many businesses with iconic logos use their logos in place of their names. For example, almost everyone can identify Apple, Coca-Cola, Nike, SONY, and Amazon because they’re instantly recognizable. Beyond the recognition, logos are also crucial for a startup in several important ways, including:
- First and continued impression: Even at a distance, the Golden Arches remind people of a close-by McDonald’s restaurant.
- The company’s personality and values: Amazon’s A to Z arrow is a reminder that you can get anything you want from Amazon.
- Familiarity over time: Anyone can easily picture a Volkswagen, Nike, Apple, or Starbucks and feel comfortable with them, thanks to their familiarity.
New startups often create their logos from scratch, while established companies may simply refresh their existing ones. Whichever stage your business is in, and whatever product or service you offer, you need to make a great choice for your company’s logo.
Finally, if your business should succeed in this information age, make sure your company has a website. If your business lacks a website, you’ll be missing out on the benefits of an online presence. Imagine you’re offering HVAC services, how many other people and companies do you think offer the same service? Your website will differentiate you from them. A website is a combination of:
- The business name
- Business logo
- Business products or services
- Tons of information about how you help your customers
A website increases your online visibility. It’s your business’s online residence like you’d have a physical shop. Customers looking for your type of products or services you offer can find you online. With a bit of creativity and search engine optimization (SEO), you can get more visibility. Your customers will also get your contact details and a detailed description of your products or services on the website.
If you’re a startup, you need to start thinking about your business or product as a brand to help you shape how your customers perceive the business and how you position yourself among your competitors.