A strong brand is a key part of building a successful company, and that doesn’t just mean coming up with a logo or corporate slogan. It can include brand identity and narrative, and various strategies that help your company come alive in the eyes of your customers, including product user interfaces and experiences (and yes, logos and slogans).
It’s “the set of expectations, memories, stories and relationships that, taken together, account for a consumer’s decision to choose one product or service over another,” in the words of marketing guru Seth Godin.
But naturally, if you’re an early-stage company, you are doing a million other things and you may have trouble focusing on branding and thinking through all of the options — and also finding the people who can make the concept come to life.
So today, TechCrunch is beginning a new survey to help us identify and feature the best brand designers who work with startups.
If you’ve worked with a great person or agency, tell us more in this two-minute survey about how they helped design your company’s brand identity and/or narrative.
We’ll showcase the top brand designers in profile articles and within a new database product we’ll be offering (including your recommendations).
This is the next category of our Verified Experts product, which we kicked off last month as part of our new Extra Crunch membership service. The first service provider category we launched, on great early-stage startup lawyers, has already brought in more than 1,750 recommendations — so we’re excited to see what TechCrunch readers have to share on branding.
Here’s a bit more about why we’re focused on brand design now.
First, it’s basically a black box for many founders, especially if your background is in technology or non-consumer businesses. And similar to attorneys, finding a brand designer as an early-stage entrepreneur can be a convoluted and time-consuming process, with most founders relying on word-of-mouth recommendations.
On the other side, not every designer thrives in chaotic, fast-paced startup environments (especially ones with tight budgets). While there are millions of people out there who call themselves designers, the pool of brand designers that has experience working with startups is small and difficult to find.
There are also few resources that speak to a startup’s design needs. Should founders hire a design agency or an independent designer? Should you hire a contractor or an in-house designer? What are the market rates for brand-design services? How does pricing work? There aren’t obvious or standardized answers to these questions. So in addition to coverage of great brand designers, we’ll be producing a series of guides about branding, along with guest posts from top professionals to help provide a new level of answers for startup founders.
Do you know a brilliant designer or agency that helped your company communicate its brand identity and/or brand narrative to customers? Tell us more by filling out this two-minute survey.
Any thoughts or questions? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.