Imagine this scenario for a moment: you are a founder of a startup, or small business (SME). To survive, you have to win the hearts and minds of your audience. To do so, you need to translate your business intent into a compelling promise that inspires multitudes. What you need is a brand plan, not just a logo. You have time, but the clock is ticking. You have cash, but can only burn so much. Freelancers are not enough. Big agencies are too much. What to do?
Let’s unpack the problem.
When trying to solidify their thoughts about their brands, in situations where they are preparing to commission the design of their brand’s identities, startups and SMEs often find themselves between a rock and a hard place. On the one hand, freelancers offer an affordable but limited service that excludes brand planning. On the other, being either new or small, they typically struggle to pay the prohibitive fees that the big design and branding consultancies charge for their more comprehensive service. Yet, like in any business, market imperatives demand that, as far as possible, startups and SMEs should clearly and unambiguously translate their business intent into a compelling promise that inspires their brand’s audience. There is simply no other way out for any enterprise that wants to succeed in the digital age.
But what causes the problem in the first place?
Most freelance designers offer a service that is untethered from the codification processes that precede and feed into the actual design work. In other words, the vast majority of freelancers sell design, minus brand planning. This somewhat unsatisfactory equation is often the only way they can place their offering within the reach of cost-sensitive startups and SMEs. In contrast, the big agencies offer a comprehensive service that includes brand planning and design. But, the business models that make their services viable force them into fee structures that only big businesses can afford. As a consequence, founders of startups and SMEs who take their brands seriously, frequently find themselves in the no man’s land that lies between freelancers and big agencies, with few satisfactory alternatives to turn to.
How do we fix this?
The likeliest stimuli for economic growth, in a country like South Africa, with its glaring inequalities, lie in empowering and enabling startups and SMEs in every possible way. This is why we created Gamatong Brand Sprint. Repurposed from tools that GV, the company formerly known as Google Ventures, uses to induct newly acquired entities into the Alphabet family, Gamatong Brand Sprint is a high-level, fast-paced workshop that condenses complex brand planning processes into a 3-hour session. Gamatong is proud to offer the service at no cost to founders of startups and SMEs, in a special series of workshops that run in the Johannesburg area, for a limited time only.
What can startups and SMEs get out of the Gamatong Brand Sprint?
The Gamatong Brand Sprint helps startups and SME’s in three important ways:
- It makes the somewhat abstract notion of ‘our brand’ more concrete.
- It eases understanding between the parties concerned by establishing a common language.
- It makes it easier for the parties to decide on the identity when multiple options are presented.
How does it work?
Gamatong facilitates a workshop involving your startup or SME team, made up of the founder or founders, plus a customer expert. The workshop prompts your team to go through exercises that help you develop the following outcomes for six key aspects of your brand:
- Visualize a single, collective long-term future of your brand.
- Articulate your brands’ purpose through the Why/How/What matrix of Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle.
- Determine the three most important values that your brand lives by.
- Identify the top three priority audiences for your brand.
- Define the attitude and style that make up the personality of your brand.
- Plot the competitive landscape in which your brand lives.
I’m interested. What do I do next?
Are you a founder of a startup or SME? Are you based in Johannesburg? Sign up for the Gamatong Brand Sprint now. Follow Gamatong on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter for regular updates. Wait to be announced as one of five founder teams selected to participate. Do the Gamatong Brand Sprint. Watch your brand plan come together in 3hrs!