Building a Brand – Invaluable Advice For Entrepreneurs
Recognizable signage, eagerly awaited future editions, an avid social media following and a constant barrage of questions about ‘what's next.' These are all elements that identify a successful event or brand. A brand, not in the traditional sense of a label such a clothing or jewellery atelier, but a brand in a much broader, all-encompassing form.
Kunal Avanti, the dynamic co-founder of the Luxury Lifestyle Weekend, a multi-brand, immersive three-day event that successfully completed its second edition at the end of February definitely knows a thing or two about how to build a brand.
I had the chance to catch up with Kunal over a cup of coffee and tried to understand some of what actually goes into creating an identifiable brand from the ground up.
When I asked Kunal, who is an animal lover and a vegan, what advice he would have for young entrepreneurs looking to build something from nothing and create an identity for their brand, his advice was enlightening. Here is some of what he had to say.
Foremost, Kunal advises young entrepreneurs to pay close attention to and completely understand 3 crucial things;
their product offering, their audience and the message they hope to deliver.
It is also essential to know your strengths and how to capitalize on them and more importantly, know and accept your weaknesses.
When it comes to a new product offering, entrepreneurs should thoroughly examine what they are presenting and ensure that they have something unique to demonstrate.
Whether it is a product, a service or an event that you hope to convert into an identifiable brand, it is imperative that you give your audience something they have not previously had access to, and, since in a world as over-saturated with brands as our is today, something truly unique is hard to create, you must strive to give your version a twist and do it better than anyone else.
The next element to take into consideration is the audience.
Who and what is your target market and what are their expectations likely to be?
Working backwards is always a good strategy, as it helps to take expectations into consideration and then implement a strategy that will guarantee that you are able to at the worst meet and at best, far exceed the expectation of your target audience.
For example, if a newly developed brand hopes to target millennials with a penchant for quirky, out of the box designs, understanding their needs and wants will allow the creators of the brand to offer them an experience or a product that caters to their specific demands.
Market research is key, and sample-groups or tests are a useful tool to use.
Finally, what are you hoping to achieve with your brand?
In what arena do you hope to make it recognizable and what is the message you want your brand to carry?
Don't allow too many ideas to dilute your primary objective.
If you aim to provide the most sought after experiential dining restaurant, for example, keep your focus entirely on how you can offer your customers an experience they will never forget, and food that they want to keep coming back for.
Establishing a novel concept, choosing the right chef and kitchen team, the right front of house staff and sourcing the best ingredients should be the priority.
Once each of these three elements has been suitably identified and understood, the only way to achieve success is hard work.
Paying attention to the smallest details, where absolutely nothing is too trivial or unimportant is essential, and an entrepreneur must be willing to check, re-check, do and re-do everything until there is absolutely no scope for error.
The devil really is in the details, and it is the smallest things that can make or break your identity as a brand.
At this point, during the execution phase, play to your strengths and those of your teammates. Entrepreneurship is not a game where egos will serve you well.
If you believe that you have to do everything on your own, you will set yourself up for failure. Build a team that you can trust, and you can work smoothly with. Respect every single member of the team and appreciate what they bring to the table. Each person on your team will have their own invaluable inputs. Make sure that you capitalize on them, and utilize their abilities entirely.
If someone is a great writer, put them in charge of all your communications, if someone is a designer, leave the visuals and aesthetics to them. Let the finance genius handle the books and crunch the numbers and so on.
Don't be afraid of spreading out the work, it will not take away from your success.
Teamwork is the only way to make the dream work.
Kunal is a wealth of information for the aspiring entrepreneur, and he and his entire team at Magnanimous have successfully been building brands for almost 5 years. Take a page out of their book, and put your nose to the grindstone, the results of your efforts will speak for themselves.
About the author:
Disha is a freelance writer and editor with over a decade of writing experience and a passion for fitness, dance and all things adventurous. She is also a luxury aficionado, an avid reader and traveller and a self-confessed shopaholic.
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