Tag Archives: product

Branding and Advertising as Part of a Start-Up Company’s Budget

Joshua Andrews writes this week on Branding and Advertising as Part of a Start-Up Company’s Budget. Read on …

Build it and they will come?

What comes to mind when you think of a start-up company’s budget? Maybe the first thing you think of is inventory. Having a product and enough money in the budget to supply that product to the public is certainly an important consideration, but is it the most important thing? What about equipment, or facilities? These are also things you cannot live without when it comes to starting a business but there is another important budget item that you do not want to overlook. You want to make sure you are leaving enough room in your budget for branding. 

First impressions count.

When you are starting a business, you are not just striving to sell a product or service, you are creating a brand. You are building your image. You want to make sure your image is something memorable and instantly recognizable. You are not just selling a product, you are selling a personality. 

Who are you?

Thanks to the phenomena of social media, everyone is branding themselves these days. We all make a point of ensuring that our personal social media accounts are not just reflecting us but that they are reflecting the side of us that we want everyone to know. For millennials in particular, brands are incredibly important. Do not let your start-up be left behind. Think about who it is you want to present to the public and reflect that in your branding. And make sure that you have enough room in your budget to do so. If you want to learn more about branding, get in touch with us today. 

Understanding Differentiation – How is your company/brand/product truly different from the competition?

Understanding Differentiation – How is your company/brand/product truly different from the competition?

Justin Williams wants you to understand differentiation. Read on …

Digging into your brand can be a scary thing. As a business, the last thing you want to do is focus on your flaws, and with good reason. But understanding what you can improve upon often helps you see the greatness that is already there. That’s why it is important that you involve your most valuable asset in the equation of differentiation: YOUR CLIENTS.

Your brand IS DIFFERENT

Your valuable customer base should always be a part of what drives your businesses growth and improvements. It’s no secret that they are the lifeblood of your business. Your brand IS DIFFERENT, and that’s why your tribe sticks with you. But where can you improve, and WHAT makes you different?

You might have a million ideas of why you THINK you are different, but you could be missing some important stuff. Sometimes, an outside opinion can offer you insight into your brand that you didn’t even know existed. So, ask other people. It’s a simple process that has helped thousands of businesses grow and stay competitive.

Send out some customer satisfaction surveys via snail mail. Include one in your purchasing process. Post a survey on your website. Ask face-to-face. Whatever it takes, find out what others LOVE and dislike about you. It’s going to help differentiate you from the pack.

Differentiation – How is your company/brand/product truly different from the competition?

Try it and learn

Involving your customers not only helps you understand how your brand is different, it actually makes you different! You keep your tribe engaged and show them you care, and you take the necessary steps to better serve them. Try it and learn. And when you are ready to find out what makes us different, and how WE CAN HELP you, go ahead and contact us.

2 Things That Can Make Your Company Stand Out

This week, Elise Walker has a couple of things that will help your company stand out. Read on …

No matter what services or products your business provides, there are likely other companies with similar products or services that can detract from your business. But regardless of how similar other businesses may seem to yours on the surface, there are ways you can differentiate your company and services from theirs.

This is important so that you can draw in potential customers and give them reasons to pay attention to your company specifically. Here are a couple of things that can make your business stand out among the competition.

1.) Equate quality with your prices.

Do you charge a lower price with the same quality as more expensive products on the market? Or do you have a price that’s worth paying for, because your services or products are superior in some way? These are points you can use to win over customers. Whether your price is higher, lower, or somewhere in the average range of the competition, help your customers see they are getting real value for that price.

2.) Show you care about your customers.

Using surveys, a suggestion box, or asking customers if they are satisfied will all be in vain if you don’t act on their thoughts and complaints. Really, it would just be extra work for you and frustrating for them. If you hear about multiple customers having the same complaint about your service, or a product or its packaging, be willing to make improvements, if possible. It may cost a little more up front, but in the long run it will be worth it, as you will gain some loyal customers.

Quality customer service in itself is very important. Responding to questions and concerns in a timely manner can make an impression. Also having enough employees on hand to manage these issues promptly is important. Kindly training staff to be courteous and professional when dealing with customers is essential. People want to be taken seriously and get solutions when they need them, especially when it involves their money. If it’s not possible to help someone with what they want, being sincere and apologizing for any inconvenience, then offering to do whatever else you can, will go a long way with a person.

Differentiating your company with quality products or services for the price you charge, and showing your customers you care about them- and not just their money- can go a long way with gaining customer appreciation and loyalty. Here at The MAD House, we think it’s important for people to know your business is unique. Please contact us for more information on how we can help build your brand to keep your company growing.

Differentiation – or – How is your company/brand/product truly different from the competition?

Differentiation
– or –
How is your company/brand/product truly different from the competition?

Janine Roberts helps us understand differentiation. Read on…

An important concept to remember when it comes to branding is differentiation – How is your company/brand/product truly different from the competition? When a product or service is perceived as indistinguishable from another, effective branding has not been achieved. Marketing campaigns need to not only show that a company offers what others do, but businesses also need to focus on the qualities that set their brand apart from the competition.

The 5 Ps

The primary areas where differences can be showcased are product, price, place, promotion, and people. A recent Gallup poll showed that these “five Ps” could influence a customer’s decision to go with a particular brand. If not for these factors, people tend to perceive different brands as the same.

Of the five Ps, the most powerful, by far, is people. This explains why one outgoing electrical contractor was able to get away with bidding higher prices than his introverted son who worked in the same field. The price was higher, but the people were different. Studies show that customers will be loyal to a product or service when they like the people who represent it.

Made on Principle

This could be based either on principle or on one’s actual experience with a business or person. The fact that purchasing decisions are often made on principle explains why businesses often cave under pressure when the ownership’s viewpoints are not politically correct. On the other hand, an example of the power of experience is the fact that people will often pay more for groceries at a store with friendlier checkers.

Contact us for help with showcasing the differences in your company, brand, or product.

Branding Reminders for Small Companies That Seek to Win Big Against Successful Competitors!

J.J. James (MAD Freakus-Contributus) has some branding reminders for small companies going up against established competition.

One of the growing pains that many small companies must propel themselves through when seeking to get ahead in business, is the pain of trying to establish themselves against their already successful competitors. After all, competitors are generally larger, and have more means at their disposal. They are usually able to attract the best employees who have the most experience in their given fields, and already have an understanding of how to see the best amount of growth with the least amount of effort and resources.

Fortunately, there are some simple ideas that a small company can implement that will help establish them as THE most sought after brand. These branding reminders for small companies are inexpensive to put into place, but will provide a huge return on any time and energy that you put into establishing them as commonplace in your business, no matter the size of the company itself.

Cultivate Personal Relationships with Customers

Cultivating personal relationships will take on a unique appearance based on the line of business your company is in, but remember, when creating your own personal brand, letting your customer know they matter will go a long way toward having an opportunity to serve that customer again in the future. Sending out a personalized thank-you gift, such as a fruit basket or box of delectable pastries, will show your customer you appreciate their business and look forward to working for them again.

Consistently Provide A High-Quality Product or Service

It may be easy to impress a customer one time. Being able to continuously provide a product or service that meets or exceeds their expectations is key to establishing your small company’s brand and propelling your company past the competition. Global leadership expert and author Robin Sharma stated it best when he said,

“Daily ripples of excellence, over time, become a tsunami of success.” 

At times, overzealous business leaders within a company look for ways to increase profit margins, and in doing so, degrade the quality of the good or service the company provides. Small companies that seek to win against their already successful competitors can’t afford to risk losing customers because of an inferior product or service. Patience is a virtue that cannot be overlooked when your small company is first trying to establish its own specific brand. Establish yourself as being known for both consistency and excellence in your product and your customer service, and you will quickly and easily earn your customer’s loyalty.

Need help developing a strong brand for your business? Let The MAD House partner with you to help you create a brand that your customers trust. Contact us for more information!

Design Innovative Packaging To Complement Innovative Products

MAD Contributor-Freak David Caissie is back this week and is suffering from innovative packaging on the brain.

So you think you’ve stumbled on the next truly great product to hit the marketplace, eh? You’ve got the next iPhone, Keurig, or portable GPS navigation system ready to take the world by storm; and it’s time to unveil it to the public with all the pomp and circumstance your organization can muster. There will be a press release, a PowerPoint presentation, and maybe even goodie bags for all your esteemed colleagues and guests to take home as a reminder of how awesome the product they just saw is. Guess what? It could all mean absolutely nothing if the packaging isn’t just as innovative as the product itself. When changing the world through product innovation, you also need strong branding and great packaging to effectively bring it to the people.

  • Consider The Experience – All of the Apple users out there know and love the experience of buying a new iPhone or MacBook. You remove the clear plastic film to unveil that plain white box. You gently slide the top portion of the box off the bottom to reveal your gorgeous state-of-the-art, brand spankin’ new iPhone … with no instructions of course. It’s the experience of knowing that you are buying something so incredibly cool that the written word isn’t even necessary or capable of accurately describing it. Just power it on and immerse yourself in the simplistic, but beautifully poetic design of the entire experience … Now that’s good packaging!
  • Go Green – If a customer is trying to choose between two very similar products, but one of them advertises eco-friendly packaging, it may be just the thing that sways them toward your product over the competition. Green packaging doesn’t have to be boring or look inferior either. It can be just as vibrant and eye-catching if that’s what you’re going for. Just make sure the customer knows that they are buying green, so hopefully it convinces them to buy your product instead of the other guy.
  • Dare To Be Different – Just because Apple has taken the idea of minimalistic design to new heights doesn’t mean you have to play copycat. The target audience for your innovative product may respond better to more substantial design methods. It all depends on what your product is and how that particular consumer sees themselves. For instance, a company like Lowe’s has used a bold blue color scheme and somewhat manly packaging design very successfully for many years now. The key is to know your product and your target consumer inside and out.

The MAD House can help you design creative, innovative, and effective packaging through our dedication to creativity, design, and elite customer service. Please contact us for more information today.