10 Ways to Build an Effective Product
⏱ Reading Time: 6 minutes
Product and brand building is a consistent and time-consuming activity that requires customization. It’s about creating a unique value proposition and providing an effective product and a better experience for your customers.
The problem arises when you try and build a product you think your users will like. Sometimes it’s difficult to step out of your own shoes, but it’s important to realize that you’re not building a product for yourself. And by considering your customers’ opinions primarily, you will soon know what they like and what you need to put your effort into.
Here are a few steps you can use as guidelines on how to build a brand.
10 Steps to an Effective Product
1. Determine Your Target Audience
You want the right person to consume your content, opt into your email list, click on your ads, right? So, the first step to begin with when building your brand or product is to know what people think of you.
According to the founder and chairman of the award-winning matchmaking firm PCBA Paul C. Brunson:
“The interesting thing about your personal brand is – it’s never what you say it is, it’s actually what everyone else says it is”.
Having a target audience for your product/service affects all areas of your brand building process. Think about what your consumers are like. From basic demographic info to more intricate details like behaviour, interests, lifestyle etc. Learn what makes them happy and what they relate. Find out how your brand identity can fulfill their needs and solve their specific problems.
Determining the right target audience will support your overall marketing efforts. So definitely do not skip the first step!
2. Define Your Product
Now that you’ve figured out who your target audience is, give them a reason to chose your product over another.
Successful brand carefully defines brand values and integrates them in the entire company — sales and marketing, finance, teams, message, and offering. Delve deep down and outline the key qualities your brand offers, that no one else is offering but also emphasize what makes your product effective.
Thus focus on the qualities and benefits that make your product unique.
People generally don’t favor brands that do not tell a story. So tell your story and make customers get emotionally attached to your brand.
3. Research Your Industry Niche
Choose two to four competitors for your comparison chart. Maybe it would be a good idea to take a look at other local businesses for starters. After that, you can also check how you’re doing in comparison to name brands. It may seem a bit unrealistic, but it can give you some good insights as well.
You should never imitate the big brands within your industry, but it’s totally legit to be aware of what they do. Learning from their mistakes is especially the go for strategy. In other words, do what the competitors won’t do.
So, research your main competitors or benchmark brands. Study how they have built their brand and what obstacles and shortcuts they’ve had and experienced along the way.
When doing that, try to answer these fundamental questions:
- What is the quality of the competitor’s products or services?
- Are they consistent with visual identity and messaging across channels?
- Do they have customer reviews or social mentions?
- What are the ways they market their business, online and offline?
4. Establish a Brand Mission Statement
Stand for something you believe in. Be innovative, bold and daring.
Here are a couple of pointers to keep in mind when stating your brand mission:
- Review the product or service your business offers.
- Pinpoint the space in the market it occupies.
- Make research of the rational needs and concerns of your customers.
- Think about your customer base and try to differentiate yourself in the market.
- Make everything from the logo to tagline, voice, message, and personality reflect your mission.
Brand Building Example: Google
Picture 1. Google is a great example of brand building
It’s obviously not just another search engine.
“Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”
Browse any list of companies considered most successful, offering the best perks or has the best reputation, and you’ll find Google at, or near the top.
One of its key qualities is innovation, and a key benefit is people. On their own website, Google says, “it’s really the people that make Google the kind of company it is.”
5. Personalize Your Brand Voice
Your brand voice depends on many external factors such as your customers and the industry you’re in. But it also reflects a lot about your internal processes, your company’s vision and mission. It’s how you communicate with your customers, and how they respond to you.
Try to use it to build an authentic brand personality, a unique way of reaching out to your potential customers.
What is more, your promotional campaign messages should also be based on your brand personality. This is an important element of brand building. The way you correspond, the visual presentation you use and the way you interact with your audience will slowly pave the way to your goal and an effective product.
Picture 2. Archetypes help us understand brand personalities
6. Don’t Work Against Your Product Category
Think from the perspective of a customer about the brands that you are most loyal to. Do you realize that they’ve earned your trust by being dependable? Thus unless you decide to change your brand into something that is more effective, be consistent. Consistency is the key.
Stay true to your brand building. Don’t constantly change it. The inconsistency will make a long-term brand building more difficult and confuse your customers.
However, many product marketing campaigns fail. Some catastrophically.
There is an example of McDonald’s going too far outside their market’s perception. Back in time, McDonald’s was known mostly as a restaurant for kids. So they wanted to create the burger at a more sophisticated customer – adults. They named it Arch Deluxe, “the burger with the grown-up taste.”
They invested an incredible amount of money — $300 million on the research, production, and marketing of the Arch Deluxe. Although having taken a big swing, they failed. It’s now one of the biggest product flops in history. But strangely enough, you can still get it in France and Russia.
Picture 3. McDonald’s and their “Arch Deluxe”
7. Create A Free Trial Or Demo
Before the official launch, you want to get as much feedback as possible. In order to see how your product or service works, you want users to experience it.
Hence create your first hand-made prototype or a product demo. This is a crucial stage in building an effective product or service. Your product or service has some expectations to meet at this is vital to understand whether it will succeed or fail.
If you are creating a website or app, use a wireframing tool. Nowadays, there are many affordable ways to make prototypes. You can buy a cheap 3D printer, carve foam and wood or you can use web tools such as Mockflow or Adobe Illustrator.
8. Bring It To Life
Before you launch it, understand your limitations and either outsource or hire the skills you need. Don’t take too long to perfect your product before releasing it.
Time and consistency are the basic elements of creating a unique brand in the market. Market your products/services in tune with the time/seasons that best suit the core proposition of the product. Even if you make a mistake, just own it and make it right.
Keep tracking customers’ feedback. This way, you’re not only gaining the customers’ loyalty, but also positioning yourself as an ethical innovator who takes the customers’ feedback to heart.
9. Promote Your Product in the Market
A great way to build an effective product is to tell people your story and make them emotionally attached to your brand, product or service.
Digital marketing is the buzzword right now. You can use different promotional and advertising channels e.g. blogs, magazines, newspapers, websites, and social media to promote your personal and business brand.
Go all-out on social media. Use social media platforms smartly to promote your product and build an enviable reputation among your potential customers.
Brand Building Example: Adidas
We all know the Adidas tagline: “Impossible is Nothing”.
Instead of telling you to do the hard work, it is illuminating inspiration and greater goal. It sells you on the dream, on the things you can achieve.
Many times Adidas used social media campaigns to increase sale and brand awareness.
10. Start Spreading Brand Awareness
As you can see building an effective product is not a cake walk. Use some of these outside-of-the-box techniques to spread brand awareness:
- Write a press release
- Ask fellow entrepreneurs and bloggers to share your new product
- Set up a referral program
- Create an infographic
- Write Blog
- Offer freemium content
- Make Partnerships with local businesses
- Give away swag
- Run a social media contest
- Host a podcast
Keep in mind that both brand-building and product implementation are evolving processes. Rinse, wash, and repeat. Regardless of the success or failure of your first go-around, take the knowledge you’ve discovered and recap it. Every time you try you will be one step closer to that success you strive for.
Which brands do you think succeed the most in their brand-building process? Share your comments or questions below!
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