Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Your startup doesn’t need to be cool to succeed… but it helps

Surprised nerd hides behind a computer keyboard over white background

Every startup wants to be cool right? Well, how do you go about doing this and how can you benefit from improving your image? In an industry that builds so much hype, it’s a given that your startup’s brand is of utmost importance. But what’s probably more important than having an established likeable brand is the need to actually follow up on your promises.
So what is this “cool”?
Defining what is cool stems from originality, exclusivity and then bridging the divide in stimulating the “want” or “need” of your product. The budget and time allocation obviously depends on the type of startup you’re planning but that doesn’t mean it cannot be cool. Simply keeping up with the trends helps you survive but setting the trends will make you cool. “A 1 million dollar company is not cool. You know what’s cool? A 1 billion dollar company, that’s cool.
Communicating your product or service to customers so that they ultimately have the desire to associate with your specific brand is what should make your business stand out from the rest. Take Apple for example: it manages to convey an image of sleek style and sophisticated lifestyle people want to associate with.
The “have you heard of this…” conversation starters should have your company name written all over it. In the end people want to be associated with things that are cool, so you win. A company’s product needs a “wow” factor — people won’t talk as much about a delivery that arrived on time. They will however talk about the exceptional customer service they experienced or the fact that the delivery came with a free cupcake. You’re not going to tweet about your cab ride, are you? A helicopter lift to the Hamptons on the other hand could be worth a mention.
A case for being Uber cool
The luxury cab service Uber is an excellent example of leveraging coolness. The company virtually oozes cool. It’s able to create incredible hype with its services such as its helicopter service that flies you from New York to the Hamptons. Expensive one at that, but worth it. This service won’t necessarily be its most lucrative in terms of direct revenue, but given the amount of publicity it’s created, it will definitely pay off in the end.
Leveraging social media the right way will make word spread like wildfire. Cool is a matter of offering people what they want, by making it accessible and exclusive at the same time. Again, people want to associate with the service or the brand. An average cab ride could be fun, perhaps. But what’s going to make it exclusive?
Source: Ventureburn

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