The rise of the internet, social media and ecommerce means that thousands more of us across the globe have access to a market place that might previously have been financially unreachable. The opportunities for so many of us as individuals to run our own businesses are limited only by our imaginations.
That’s not to say it is easy – but when all your research and communication can be achieved through the screen in your front living room, then persistence and a belief in what you are doing can help you follow a long held dream to starting up your own brand. Here we highlight important considerations to take into account when that dream starts to turn into reality.
IDENTIFY YOUR IDEAL CUSTOMER
Having an in-depth picture of your ideal customer will help you make the right decisions as you follow through on your decisions. You may believe in your product and think it’s the best thing since sliced bread, but will your target market. Think about the pain points your product solves, and build this into your ideal customer profile.
The best way to do this is to take a piece of paper and stick a photo of your perfect client in the middle of the paper. How old are they, are they married/single, from a particular culture, what are their values and beliefs, what job do they do, do they have children, what do they enjoy doing, what are the things they struggle with, what are their biggest challenges. Get to know your perfect client inside out.
This gives you a solid foundation to build a future marketing conversations and communications, as well as producing highly targeted online promotions.
PACKAGING & BRANDING
Always remember that when your customer receives your products in the mail, you want a positive and uplifting emotional response from your customer that is going to keep them coming back and buying more product. Nothing is worse than looking forward to a delivery, only to open it up and be disappointed by poor quality branding and packaging. A product return is a disappointment. A non-returning customer is an even bigger disappointment.
Whether you flex your creative skills by designing your own brand logo and visuals through Canva, or outsourcing it to a professional, make sure you crowdsource opinions from your target market through Facebook groups and other social media (this is also a perfect opportunity for some pre-launch publicity). Often you as the product creator are too ‘close’ to the project and can’t see the bigger picture that others can. And don’t take their criticism to heart – use it constructively and make positive changes.
When choosing your packaging, keep in mind the following:
- Does it reflect your brand and ethos?
- Does feed into the right emotional response from your client.
- Will it protect the product so that it arrives at its destination in perfect condition?
CROWDSOURCE SOME GENUINE TESTIMONIALS THROUGH A PRE-LAUNCH
The most powerful marketing tool you can have is third part testimonials. The more genuine testimonials you can include in your marketing the better. They can also be fed across your social media.
You can ask a group of local friends and acquaintances close by to test your products, but if you don’t have access to enough, promote a limited free pre-launch promotion through social media. Make sure it is limited though – you don’t want to be giving away loads of free products.
Work with them closely (you don’t want them taking your product and running without giving you a testimonial). Bring them close to you, listen to any criticism and take it on board constructively. Make changes if necessary. Create a feel good factor by referring to these ‘early adopters’ as your ‘founder’s favourites’ or something similar that suits your personality and your brand’s personality – it will help make them feel part of a special club.