Doug was here to dispel the myth that marketing comes later in the process and cycle of launching a startup. Instead, he stresses the importance of branding for three key value areas: Strategic, Human Resources and Financial strength.
"Branding delivers value to startups by strengthening strategic, HR and financial outlooks."
1. Strategic Strength
A strong brand helps align business strategy with the customer experience. When employees embody the brand vision there is a coherence that informs the customers experience, and as a result, their satisfaction. One aspect of branding is outlining guiding principles for employees so there is a framework to guide customer interactions.
2. Human Resources
Powerful brands are able to recruit and retain top talent. Branding is synonymous with reputation; by fostering people skills and personal development, employees will publically express their satisfaction.
3. Financial Strength
Beginning with a strong brand accelerates business development and helps maintain premium pricing. As a startup, this is extremely important. Investors are more likely to invest in companies that are focused on brand development because they understand the long-term value creation.
Finally, turn the sales funnel upside down! A strong brand will attract customers and increase the effectiveness of your sales force. Rather than solely working to generate leads, have customers flock to your brand! Theres nothing better than being preceded by a strong reputation, especially as a startup walking into a sales or investor meeting!