Brand Building Essentials Checklist – Last week we introduced you to our overview of the Zero to Hero blog series. In today’s blog post, we will cover the areas you need to focus in building your brand from the start. The phrase “Build a Brand” gets thrown around often and most people know that having a brand is essential, by implementing these features, you are guaranteed to have a good foundation to build a global brand.
Before I get into this first blog post I wanted to give you an overview of whats coming and what the main milestones are in this series. Some of those topics are super exciting so make sure to share this blog post and stay with us until the end of the project.
Building a Brand
❏ The importance of building an Ecommerce brand
❏ Choosing a brand name & why it’s crucial for long term success
❏ Creating a Logo
❏ Choosing a slogan that fits the brand
❏ Creating a story behind your brand
❏ Brand Design 101: Brand colours, fonts & mood/voice. Consistency is key.
❏ Why incorporating is essential for your business )
❏ Where to incorporate. Pros and cons of each + which one is better for e-commerce.
❏ Currency accounts / Comparison of each & why it’s essential to not lose money in exchange rates.
Choosing a Product
❏ Product Research Guide
❏ Industry Research & Demographics
❏ Competition Analysis
❏ Identifying flaws in competitor’s products & making your product better.
❏ Private Label vs Own Design and why being unique is better.
❏ Complete Guide on Manufacturing Overseas
❏ Materials & components to avoid when starting
❏ Contracts – Protecting your brand
❏ Choosing a supplier
❏ Ordering samples & how to test each sample effectively
❏ Product Design Guide
❏ Mould Process Guide
❏ Why having your own website from day 1 is essential for your brand
❏ A look at Ecommerce platforms & what do they offer. Which one we recommend for beginners.
❏ Building you store
❏ Email Marketing & Building a List
❏ E-commerce SEO and how to drive traffic
❏ PPC Overview
❏ E-commerce blogging
❏ Why good product descriptions is key to success
Social Media Marketing
❏ Setting up Social Media
❏ Gaining Exposure
❏ Social Media Marketing
❏ Connecting with Authority in your niche
❏ Fulfillment Centres – What they are and why they are essential for your growth
❏ List of fulfillment centres
❏ Fulfillment centres vs FBA
Branding your Product
❏ Product Photography
❏ Custom Packaging – standing out from your competition
❏ Shipping Boxes
❏ Insert Cards & Marketing Materials
❏ Customer Service & Experience
▪ A guide on using sellers central platform effectively.
▪ Amazon Sponsored Products – A guide to PPC and how to optimize your listing based on Amazon ppc Results
▪ Customer Service – How to handle different customer issues and respond effectively.
▪ Amazon Deal Guide – Lightning Deals – Prime Day – Black Friday Deals. How to apply and maximising profits during deals. We will also explore how to run deals outside of Amazon to your listing.
▪ Amazon Vine and Giveaway Program – An explanation and overview if it’s effective for your business.
Retail & Wholesaling
❏ Finding retailers & distributors in your niche
❏ Create a catalogue
❏ Contacting retailers
❏ Expanding to other countries
❏ Maximising other sales channels
❏ Creating a product line
❏ Exhibitions & Tradeshows
Now let’s go into today’s post.
The Key Areas To Building a Brand
Choosing a Brand Name
This will be the main feature besides the logo of your brand, so it must be chosen carefully. Brand Names can be mainly classified into 3 main categories:
1. Niche Specific – Example: Joe’s Tea Company
This choice is fine if you’re planning to exclusively sell within one specific niche or main category. However, as your company grows, it is essential to expand into different areas of one category.
2. Category Specific – Example: Joe’s Beverage
This option is ideal if your main focus right from the start is to grow your brand to dominate your niche. By not limiting the choice of products in the brand name you can diversify according to the market at that time. Targeting multiple sub-categories within a niche is essential(as we will learn later on in the series) because you can target multiple keywords within that niche.
3. Unique Brand Name – Example: Empower Drinks
This gives you the most freedom for your brand, as you can expand and release products without being limited by the brand itself. However, a lot of effort must be made to get the name out there and customers won’t start associating your brand with a specific category in the short term. The best benefit of a unique brand name is that you have complete control, this is especially true if trademarks, domain names and other intellectual property is available for you to register.
Ultimately, a brand name goes down to preference. All three choices require effort, a line of successful products and excellent customer service to succeed.
The logo, in most cases, IS what makes the brand. It is the key feature with which your customers will identify your brand. Before hiring a designer for your logo, here are some key aspects your logo should include:
Simple but Detailed
A logo shouldn’t be too complicated as it can be distracting, especially when it comes to products. Think of the products you will release, or plan to release on the market, it is likely your products will be made of different materials(wood, stainless steel, fabric, etc.) and a variety of methods of application(embroidery, engraving, stamping, etc.). A great logo will make your products stand out more and its a great way to start building a brand.
Ideally your brand shouldn’t have more than 2 or 3 colours in all of it’s branding. This applies to all aspects of the brand. In the pictures below, you can see how all the major brands pick one main colour and focus all their branding on it.
Image Source: The Logo Company
Here is how certain colours effect Men and Woman. Depending on your niche, this may prove helpful in the design process
Image Source: Entrepreneur.com
Make your brand appealing to the audience you’re targeting. Audience segmentation will be helpful in targeting the right demographics that may be interested in your brand through advertising and social media. The main demographics you should be interested in are:
1. Gender: Male or Female
2. Age Range
3. Location – Country and State/Province
How ImportDojo Applies Branding
As you can see from the image above, Import Dojo implements all key elements when it comes to branding. The brand name in itself has great relevance to its audience. The logo is fairly simple and recognizable, with few, but bright colours.
However, what makes the brand in this case, is the story of how Import Dojo was started and why Manuel had the idea to start the blog. You can read more about it here.
Products, even if essential, are only one aspect of the brand. When you combine the same concepts throughout your website, social media and packaging; that’s when a brand truly starts to distinguish itself from the competition.
The Hard Truth: Branding Takes a Long Time To Be Effective
Unfortunately, the not so sexy part about branding is that it takes an unbelievable amount of work, consistency and time to see the rewards. Nonetheless, people are more likely to buy from a company that offers a unique experience to its customers. The whole point of the series is expand your brand to multiple sales channels and expand globally.
While Amazon will still be the main sales channel, having control over your brand, customers and products is going to be the only way to succeed in the future.
This was only a brief overview and guideline on the process of kick starting your brand. We hope this blog post was helpful in guiding you in the right direction. the upcoming weeks blog posts, we will dive deeper into:
– Choosing a great slogan and how to make a slogan that fits your brand.
– Brand Story – How stories can help your sales and connect with customers.
– Finding a Designer – The questions to ask before hiring a designer and what to look for.
If you have any questions or you would like to know in more detail, please leave a comment below.
All the best,