A small-town family shoe workshop Milami worked under the family name for almost half a century. When we met the owner, it was still a family business. Good kid shoes were the product they were known for in the local community. But to become the best kid shoe in the country and among the best in the region, they had to have something more than a good product. A vision and a brand.
When you have a great product, you have to strengthen its brand in order to communicate with the market. Before someone decides to buy your product, he or she must establish trust and value the product. After, the product quality will speak for itself. This was our main goal, to give the shoe a chance to speak.
Branding – one small step after another
A brand is a universal category. People most commonly side branding with logo and design. This is just a small piece of the great puzzle. A brand is a collective perception of one company. In this case a children shoe company. We've developed a 5 STEPS strategy to transform a local shoe into today's trusted family brand.
Step 1: Simple is unforgettable
Introducing one product always starts with a logo. Logo can be pretty but if it fails to communicate with your audience, it's good for nothing. When thinking about your logo, it should be simple to remember but with a powerful impression of one's way of thinking. The logo must reflect the values of the product and tell the little story. Everyone loves a good story in a great package. Now you have a logo. Brand your product everywhere.
The inspiration for the Milami logo was the owner's family name (lit. trans. Little Mouse)
Step 2: Generate trust
Whatever the industry you are working in, your company must build trust with its customers. This is a great basis for establishing a relationship with your buyers. Talk about personal experience. What are the benefits of the product or service? Give good guarantee deals and share other's experiences. Showcase user comments. A website is a great tool to generate trust. Starting from design and content, you have reached out so the visitors can have a clear picture of who they are dealing with.
Step 3: Advertize, digitalize and advertize
An introduction is a two-way street. You have to know your audience. Where are they, how to speak to them. Different channels attract different groups. Your logo on the product is for instance free advertising with the best model you can get – satisfied customer. Social media is a whole new world with a tone of opportunities. You have to be there and communicate daily, always seeking the way to your customers. The sea of advertising is bigger than ever, and you have to swim constantly. Don't drown.
Step 4: Inspire inside/out
Good branding is something that resonates on a different level inside the company and outside. Customers feel great and secure when they enjoy a known brand. But, don't forget about your employees too. Everyone loves to work in a positioned brand with the vision. Give them something more to hope for. Make them the greatest ambassadors of your brand. If you have your team's trust, you can accomplish plenty. Share the passion.
Step 5: Brand for future
And the last step is never to stop branding. Building your brand is your present and future investment. In the time of prosperity, your brand will be recognized even more. In a time of crisis, your brand will be strong enough to overcome the situation and rise above the water.
The Shoemaker's journey
From a family workshop to a company that has great regional sales and a strong e-commerce base, you have to come a long way. Branding is a continuous process, but always rewarding if done right. It is a never-ending journey that always starts the same – the first step.
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