The Value of Branding for Startups

Entrepreneurs and startup businesses are the pride and personality of our country.  Every year tens of thousands of founders launch their businesses with a vision of becoming the next “unicorn.” In 2019, there were 30.7 million startup businesses in the US alone.

With so much competition, how do you differentiate and find success? How do you ensure your startup business – one that you have poured your blood, sweat and tears into – makes it?  

Developing a compelling and authentic brand from the beginning is often one of the most critical components to unlocking success in a marketplace where almost 90% of startups fail.

Your brand communicates to customers, employees, and other stakeholders important to your business, who you are, and what you stand for. This helps to create brand equity that can withstand economic and social challenges. Proper branding aligns your vision, growth strategies, and communications efforts to help deliver an influential narrative about the future of your business to customers and investors.

In 2011, Warby Parker began as a startup selling affordable, fashionable eyewear. Five years later, it was valued at $1.2 billion dollars. How did they do it? Warby Parker attributed much of its success to branding, PR, and customer loyalty. Developing a consistent brand strategy that positioned Warby Parker as the "Netflix of glasses" — offering consistent pricing and using a distinctive blue color palette helped create a strong brand identity for the company.

This strategy, paired with a significant investment in PR that generated widespread media coverage, resulted in accelerated growth for the brand. “Focusing on PR and customer retention are really good ways of spending limited marketing dollars, especially in the early days of your e-commerce journey,”  said Mark Spera, founder of Growth Marketing Pro.

Three Ways to Invest in Your Startup's Brand

1. Develop A Brand Identity

Startups have a great opportunity to develop a fresh, eye-catching brand identity and introduce themselves to the market on the right foot. Ask yourself: What do you want people to think of when they see your brand? You’re new to your industry, how do you want to introduce yourself? If you were a celebrity, who would you be? As a startup, your brand is your first impression — make it great and success is soon to follow.

2. Develop A Research-Backed Strategy

Starting with a smart core strategy saves money in the long run. Look to experts at branding agencies, such as Spectacle Strategy, to develop a rock-solid brand strategy for your startup. Rather than throwing dollars at random marketing "hunches", using a specialized firm to research, design, and help execute a strategy for your brand is a much smarter way to spend your budget.

3. Become A Part Of Your Community

By finding your community or “tribe” and becoming involved in cultural conversations, you build grassroots enthusiasm for your brand and business. Communities — whether physical or virtual — love and support authentic, customer-oriented brands, especially those that share similar core values. What’s more, your community could become a powerful source of talent for your growing organization.

Ready to dive into brand strategy to accelerate growth for your startup? Contact us at