Branding via Tech
Michaela Atanassova Newcastle 10.05.19
Entrepreneurs Society, Newcastle University
A successful business has flocks of customers by appealing to their tastes and needs, but more importantly by differentiating from the competition with an enticing promise that would capture feeling of belonging. The most difficult, yet most asked question is how to effectively create a personal attraction for customers to a brand, so they would return repeatedly. It is here that several important areas come into play:
1) Interactive channels of communication.
2) Building an engaging relationship.
3) Refreshing experience that is maintained consistently.
However, the difficulty here for entrepreneurs is employing the necessary tools to do this with the limited capital available to them.
Firstly, it is vital to know why most start-ups fail in the seemingly simple task of building a brand. According to Fast Company, 75% of venture-backed start-ups fail due to lack of focus, motivation, commitment and passion. An effective technique to overcome this is storytelling, connecting what you offer with emotions so that customers would see the value the product from your perspective. A tool that could help achieve it would be to create social media presence that would engage with people – meaning not to talk about yourself but to actually develop an environment which resembles a two-sided conversation by having talks or blog-like posts.
More advanced techniques (which requires higher capital), would be an immersive experience with virtual reality first tasters for more tech focused start-ups, whose cheaper alternatives are: augmented reality phone apps that would show in detail product or mixed reality using Snapchat filters that would show changes to images. Even cheaper alternative is to have an interactive landing web-page which combines browser and app performance to present your brand in a new light.
Secondly, to build a relationship with the potential customers it would be best to start with freemiums that would allow you to receive feedback on your product or idea and learn from it by knowing your mistakes and market trends. The first step would be to show credibility online by Q&A sites like Quora where you would be able to share your knowledge.
Next, would be to have actual meetings to network with either customers or like-minded entrepreneurs – useful apps wold be Meetup (join groups) or Plancast (see events your friends are attending). New way to popularize your start-up is using virtual business cards like MiniCard, QR Code – replaces text-filled cards, Twtbizcard – transforms twitter profile into business card.
Moreover, to build a relationship requires consistency and continuous share of knowledge – useful tools would be newsletter services like Mailchimp, Tiny letter, Aweber which help you to keep in touch with your subscribers and remind them of your existence.
Finally, your start-up idea or product need to keep with technological advances if it is more online focused – meaning your website would need to evolve by using web developers, you should constantly show progress and update it accordingly to circumstances. For example, a travel app would have constant bugs and would need daily or at least weekly debugging in order to maintain smooth user experience. If for example it is a business idea, to keep it alive and moving forward it would require meeting potential partners and indirectly informing the market of your presence to keep the constant flow of interest. In the end it is not just trying to win a better brand image but to create one by differentiating it from the conventional one with smart choices.
Collective Equity Ownership Ltd. (CEO) is a secondary fund. We allow founders and shareholders of VC-backed companies to pool together their shares with other late-stage companies to diversify their portfolio.
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