Build a Brand From the Beginning

CLIENT: Handcrafted artisanal sea salts entrepreneur

CHALLENGE: Matching brand presence with the quality of the product

SOLUTION: Focus on brand strategy and implementation of the brand

IMPACT: Foundation for making decisions on the experience for potential customers and retaining them

What’s the difference between a food entrepreneur and a successful food entrepreneur? The size of the business goal combined with focus. That’s where Bang Pound Dot came in to help Carlo Overhulser, founder of Big Sur Salts. He knew the potential of his company from the beginning and quickly realized that he cannot do it all by himself. In order for his business to gain ground, he learned to focus on what he is really good at and hired us as experts to fill in the blanks.

“The value is the difference between me succeeding and the people who did this before failing. And it’s the branding part of it.”

Our branding process vetted out what Big Sur Salts is doing, why and for who. Get them out of your head and put them down in print. This allows stakeholders to having something to look at when making decisions and ensure they align with the brand and the goals of the company.

The majority of the actual process was BPD getting to know me and the product very well; getting to know who my customers were and actually reaching out to them. There’s a serious analysis of comparisons between my business and similar businesses. There was a necessity built around simple focuses instead of being all over the place.

Packaging is Critical

Over the time that Big Sur Salts and Bang Pound Dot have been working together, the packaging for the craft salts has evolved to what is now a better match to not only invoke the quality that is inside but also to match the typical audience for these artisanal salts. While Bang Pound Dot was not hired to work on the packaging for Big Sur Salts, we were able to guide Carlo with the decisions he makes for it based on the creative brief we hammered out for him.

"I started to realize I had happier customers—my packaging changed three times in a year—I wouldn’t have [done that without this]. That whole process seems like it took forever and I thought I was going to lose business because I was changing so much but it was the opposite. My customers liked them more."

Believe in your product but don’t get too comfortable. Always be thinking about who it is for and the purchasing and receiving end of it. Keeping this in mind and having a creative brief in hand means getting further with your merchandising, giving the ability to define more details and touchpoints.

Listen

When you’re just getting started, changing any of these or adding to the mix can cause confusion. Whether it is your color palette, your logo or anything else that visually identifies your brand, it is important to constantly and consistently use them. As stakeholders and as employees for a brand, it may be repetitive on the border of boring, but these are all important for those outside of the company. Keep repeating, keep it simple--so that you can focus on all the other tasks that work towards the business goal.

"The other thing that helped me was you pushing me. Yeah there were a ton of phone calls and emails. But without that I wouldn’t be half way to where I am without you doing that. It was very personal and personable."

Don’t take it personally if we’re constantly asking you what you’re doing (hey, we said we’re going to get shrimp and gritty with it!). We’re going to remind you that we’re here to be your strategist and together we embarked on a process to fuel your journey toward running a successful food company. Having branding down from the beginning allows you to focus on growth.

"It gave me a focus on what the actual product is, at the end of the day salt is salt but the branding made it so much more.'