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SXSW Interactive 2014

Branding from Day Zero: Startup Brand Strategy

Branding. All startups have to do it, but no one really knows how. Punch "startup branding" into google and you'll find checklists and 10-step plans that'll tell you to "have a logo" and "be consistent."
Startups don't need tips and tricks. They need an understanding of brand strategy—what it means and why it matters. And ultimately, how to do it from the beginning.
Name, logo, t-shirts, stickers—these are all parts of brand, but what undergirds the whole system? Brand strategy. Startups usually skip this crucial phase. And it shows.
I'm a hybrid ad man/startup guy who's built brands for everything from an event discovery app to an AI system. I've seen tons of branding tools, but none specifically those starting from scratch.
This talk will explore a way forward specifically for startups. We'll move past the tips & tricks and focus on a few actually helpful questions for building a great brand that resonates with your audience and build long-term loyalty.

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Additional Supporting Materials


  1. What exactly is brand strategy in the context of early stage startups, and does it really matter?
  2. Why do startups often miss the mark when it comes to thinking deeply about developing a brand strategy?
  3. How does brand strategy for startups differ from existing brand processes, frameworks, and methodologies?
  4. What are the 3 overlapping areas of a strong brand strategy every startup can begin developing today?
  5. How can a solid brand strategy save a startup time and money as it develops tangible assets like a name, logo, and identity system?



Patrick Woods, Director, archer>malmo

Meta Information:

  • Tags: startups, strategy
  • Event: Interactive
  • Format: Future15
  • Track: Entrepreneurialism and Business
  • Track 2
  • Level: Beginning
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