The Lean Brand: Applying Lean Principles to Eliminate Marketing Waste

Jonathan Crowe by

In this week’s Labcast, Jeremiah Gardner and Brant Cooper, authors of the upcoming book The Lean Brand, explain why we need a new approach to branding that centers around quick iterations and removing waste.

Key Takeaways

  • Branding typically has a lot of waste: Lean branding is about eliminating waste and engaging in value added activities to deliver value for your customers. For startups, since many companies don’t have a large amount of data to work with, a good first step is to document your assumptions and start running experiments to discover the value you are creating.
  • A product is simply a utility to solve a problem. A brand is the emotional impact that the product and the company have on the customer: A strong brand leads people to care about your organization and creates passionate customers.
  • Your story is their story: Be familiar, be confident, and be able to talk about your story to your audience in an honest way. If your story resonates keep a note of what’s working, what’s not, and what you can iterate on. Remember, you and your customer have a shared aspiration that you’re trying to achieve together.
  • Don’t ask “how do I get my first 1,000 customers?” Rather ask yourself, “How do I get one truly passionate customer?” If you can understand why you’ve resonated with that customer, chances are you can replicate that passion in others.
  • Forget traditional marketing strategies to gain feedback: Surveys will never fully answer the question, “Are you passionate about us?” You need to go out and test your branding face to face, through interactive experiments, to determine the level of emotional impact your company will have on your customers.
  • The brand is the responsibility of everyone in the organization, and it’s shared between you and your audience: Your brand is not just your assets, but everything you do and don’t do to interact with your customers. Customers will ultimately attribute value or render you irrelevant.
  • There’s no one-size-fits-all equation for the branding process: The company’s mission, vision, values, logo, and color scheme added together does not equal a brand. Rather, branding takes on meaning when people gain value from it. As a result, the journey to developing a brand is different for everyone.

Screen Shot 2015-01-28 at 6.16.37 PM

Listen Here

Subscribe to Labcast

Transcript

Recording: This is Labcast, ideas and insights for the expansion stage senior manager, hosted by OpenView Labs.

Jonathan Crowe: Hi, everyone. Welcome to Labcast. This is your host, Jonathan Crowe. This week’s guests on the program are Jeremiah Gardner and Brant Cooper, authors of the new book, “The Lean Brand.”

I’m particularly excited to have you guys on board this week because, as everyone probably knows, we’re big fans of lean and agile development here at OpenView. But one thing I personally really enjoyed is seeing that the discussion around lean is starting to break outside the confines of product development.

All of a sudden, there are people other than developers talking about being agile and about applying lean, agile principles to other disciplines, like marketing and sales. I think that’s fantastic. I think it’s really, really interesting.

So a great case and point is this book, which is the first in applying lean principles to brand development. I’m really excited to dive in. But before we do, I thought we could step back just a little bit and mention that, Brant, we’ve had you on the program before, last year, around the release of your first book, “The Lean Entrepreneur.”

So these books obviously have a close connection. For my first question, Brant, I thought you could talk a little bit about your decision to follow-up “The Lean Entrepreneur” with this new book, “The Lean Brand.” What was the story there?

Brant Cooper: Yeah. Sure, Jonathan. So as we all know by now, hopefully, the lean in lean entrepreneur and lean brand and lean startup is about eliminating waste. When Jeremiah reached out to me to talk to me about his book project, “The Lean Brand,” I was super interested because I believe that branding is where there’s still an incredible amount of waste. So I was immediately drawn to that.

As Jeremiah and I were talking, the thought had occurred to me that really everything that I was talking about inside of the value stream, sort of in a broad sense, was really talking about brand. So a value stream and lean parlance is all of the value-add activities that an organization goes through in order to create and deliver value to a customer. When you’re a startup, that’s really… or a large enterprise that’s doing innovative practices… Those are really unknowns. So your value stream is really made up of a set of assumptions.

So in “The Lean Entrepreneur,” I talked about framework, this value stream discovery tool. So it’s really about documenting these assumptions about what the business needs to do to make customers first aware, all the way through becoming passionate about a product or service. What is the customer behavior then that’s expected? And how can you measure that?

So in a very lean startup fashion, you can document assumptions and start running experiments to discover what the value is that you’re creating and for whom. So what sort of was occurring to us is that there’s this step we call satisfaction, which is really about the product utility. Does the product fulfill the promise that you’ve made, right, about solving a particular problem or addressing a passion?

Then the next step beyond that is creating these passionate customers. Really the passionate, as I talk about in the book, is really about this emotional element. It’s about the emotional impact that the product and the company have on this person whose problem you’re solving. It really, at that point, was like, “Duh.” The moment you’re talking about the passion that is developed in a customer around a company, well, now you really are talking about the brand.

So that’s really where the dovetail is between these books. Jeremiah is sort of bringing this thought leadership around. How you develop a brand in a lean way that dovetails right into the value stream discovery tool that we introduced in “The Lean Entrepreneur.”

Jonathan Crowe: All right. Great. A lot of people, when you think of lean and agile, people automatically think of developers. Right? Well, actually these concepts can be applied to other facets of the company too. So Jeremiah, I was wondering if you could talk a little bit about why you think it’s so important that marketers and also just founders start thinking about how they can take those concepts and apply them to other parts of the business.

Also, I was curious to hear your thoughts about where in the process of kind of building and establishing a company you think this process really lies. Is this something that comes after product development? Should you be thinking of these things all along?

Jeremiah Gardner: Sure. Thanks again, Jonathan, for having me. Excited to be here. Yeah, I think first, let me kind of answer the first part of your question about why lean approach to brand actually matters and applying it there.

I think, as kind of Brant said, a lot of startups run the risk of creating a lot of waste in brand development. In fact, I think the conventional model of branding that we’ve kind of been using for years and years and years is geared towards this creation of waste and is asking kind of the wrong questions when it comes to innovation and when it comes to startups, specifically.

So I think that lean, as a methodology, when you apply it to something like brand, which I think the first step is to really understand what is a brand is a huge question, and there’s so many definitions out there. I think when you kind of get to the root of what those questions or what those definitions are really getting at, brand is the relationship that develops between an organization and an audience.

It’s that relationship that leads people to passion. It’s that relationship that leads people to care about a startup, to care about an organization, in a way that reaches beyond simply solving a functional problem they might have.

So lean branding really solves the problem of the waste that’s being created in the conventional model, by asking the question of how do these relationships develop and how can we provide a framework to help startups learn what works and what doesn’t, in relationship to building a passionate following with the people that will become their ultimate customers.

So I think that that’s kind of why Lean works in the branding world and why it’s so important to have this conversation now. Then to answer kind of your second question about where in the process does this fit, well, when you think about brand as relationship, it happens on day one, the first time that you mention your idea to your roommate or to your wife or your mom or dad. You’re starting to build that relationship right there.

Then the first time that you run an experiment with a customer, or you have your first kind of customer development conversations, that’s brand. So brand isn’t the logo and isn’t the color scheme and isn’t this vision statement and these brand promise statements and these long decks that kind of create all of this waste about projecting what you want people to believe about you.

Brand is really much simpler than that. It’s the relationship. The question that lean really works to answer is how does that relationship develop and how can you build it in a way that’s sustainable and in a way that creates passionate customers.

Jonathan Crowe: It seems like one thing that comes up a lot is this idea of telling your story. So you, as a company, determining… basically broadcasting to the world, “Here’s who we are. Here’s what we’re all about.” This is something that a lot of companies don’t do a great job at, especially in the startup world. There’s a lot of focus on product, and this thing kind of comes afterwards. I think the book and a lot of the topics you’re covering really are kind of addressing that head on.

I would love to hear your thoughts about any advice you have for how companies can go about actually developing that story. How should they approach it? What are some steps they can take to help them discover who it is they want to be saying, here’s who we are and what we care about?

Brant Cooper: Yeah. Sure. I mean, that’s a huge topic. Right? I think we kind of tackle that topic in a lot of ways in our book. But one of the things that I would say is that sometimes it comes back down to something so simple, and that’s why did you choose to do this. There are obviously layers to every story. Right? There’s a founder layer, the Elon Musk layer of who he is and why he chose to do this. That evolves into a story about startup, the Space X story or the Tesla story, in terms of what they stand for as an organization.

But the centerpiece of all this stuff is why do you do that. What makes you get up in the morning? What truly caused you to kind of take that risk of forming an organization and an entity and trying to deliver value and discover value with an audience?

So there isn’t a short click or short path to answering that question, in terms of, “Oh, just answer this question and this question, and you’ll know your story.” It’s much deeper than that. So I think when a startup approaches their story, it really comes down to looking in the mirror and having honest conversations about why they’re doing what they’re doing, the aspiration that they’re chasing as a startup, what change they want to see in the world, and being able to be familiar with that, be confident in it, and be able to really talk about that with their audience in an honest way.

Then I think it comes down to… The next step is really to go out and talk to the customers and talk to your potential audience and say, does it resonate? You know? What about us resonates? And what about us doesn’t? That’s part of the learning process about making a compelling story and not just saying, “Since I was five, I always wanted to run my own bagel shop.” Well, that story doesn’t connect with anyone but yourself.

So the story is not only about who you are, but it’s also about who your audience is. Connecting those pieces in kind of a synchronicity is where brand really starts to have an impact on the organization, on the business and the whole. It sort of…

Jonathan Crowe: It seems… Oh, sorry. Go ahead, Brant.

Brant Cooper: Yeah, I was just going to say it’s sort of this tricky area. Right? Because we teach entrepreneurs that they have to be these visionaries. Right? So we probably even talked about this in our past conversations, this whole myth of the visionary thing.

Jonathan Crowe: Right. Right.

Brant Cooper: So these entrepreneurs, they have this particular vision, and it’s usually around their product. They’re taught that they must not change the product, that they have to have conviction, and that they have to go out and build this thing. In a lot of my talks around the myth of the visionary, what I talk about is, well, actually the true “visionaries” in the world are those that relentlessly pursue a change that they want to see in the world. Actually they’re willing to be flexible in the product in order to find out what is it that the market actually wants.

So it’s this… Just as Jeremiah was saying, it’s this convergence around the direction that the market pulls you, in concert with the change that you actually want to see in the world. Out of that develops this story where you and your audience, you and your customer, your startup and your customer, have this shared aspiration, this shared change that they want to make, whether it’s something global or something that’s inside these people’s lives that you’re impacting. You’re going to go on this journey to reach this aspiration. That sort of becomes the basis of your marketing, the basis of your brand.

Inside of that is this product that has the utility value of solving a problem, but the brand really is around this larger emotional impact that you’re trying to achieve together.

Jonathan Crowe: Right. I think you bring up a really good point that’s exactly right. I was hoping you would go with this. When you talk about kind of establishing your brand and your company’s story, I think a lot of people do jump to that vision of, okay, well, it’s the founders kind of sitting alone, brainstorming, and they’re going to do a lot of introspection, which I think probably is a necessary part of the process.

But then when you’re talking about applying this lean concept to it, that implies that you really need to go out there and test and iterate too. So it also implies that you need to be open to even adjusting what you think that right story is, based on getting feedback.

So do you guys have any suggestions, in terms of getting that feedback? Or is it as simple as just sending out surveys and having conversations? Is there any kind of standard thing that you’re looking at, in terms of gauging… Okay. Is what we’re telling really connecting?

Jeremiah Gardner: Go ahead, Brant. Yeah.

Brant Cooper: Well, I was just going to say that the first thing it starts with is hypothesizing who you think your high-value customer is going to be. So who is it that has the problem that you think you’re solving? Who is it that has the pain the deepest, so that if you solve it, it’s going to have this bigger impact?

So part of it is simply hypothesizing different personas, different market segments, where you think that these people have this problem, and that solving that problem will have this big impact. So it’s often really difficult for entrepreneurs to think about the impact side of things. It’s sort of soft. It starts soft, like, “Oh, I’m going to save them time. I’m going to save them money.”

But really, people make decisions based on sort of more impactful things like that. So if you’re selling into a business, are you going to turn the buyer into a hero? You know? Is the person that buys your product going to save the day? Are they going to save the network? What is the impact that they’re going to be feeling, based on their relationship with their boss or with the company? Is your product putting your IT manager at risk, that if he buys your product, he’s going to lose his job? You know?

I sort of was trying to sell a product in that realm once, and it was very difficult. Right? So what is the emotional impact that the problem is going to have for these different market segments? Then you can start figuring out how do I start testing the messaging and the positioning and the story that works within those different market segments.

Then part of it also has to be about your own personal values. Right? If you’re going to choose to not go after the market segment that you’re passionate about, then does that still… Is that still consistent with the change that you’re trying to bring? So that’s really sort of where the introspection comes in.

Really, with a lot of entrepreneurs, it’s really very difficult for them to articulate this. It sort of seems obvious, but a lot of founders are so stuck into the product features and benefits, that they’re not able to describe the real value that they’re providing or the real change that they want to see. They need to get outside of their product focus in order to start evaluating that and then testing it.

Testing really has to happen in person. Surveys… People can only respond to what you’ve put in the survey. So if there’s something outside of the survey, you’re not getting that. When you’re talking about emotional things, it’s very difficult for people to lie about that. So if you’re face to face with people, and you’re testing essentially the value proposition and the emotional impact, you should be able to see in the person’s eyes, in their reaction, whether they’re responding to this problem, this bigger issue that you’re trying to resolve. What were you going to say, Jeremiah?

Jeremiah Gardner: Yeah, let me… All that is great. I mean, I think another piece to everything that you said too is that there’s an aspect to what startups and founders are asking themselves that kind of needs to evolve as well. The question isn’t, “How do I get my first 1000 customers?” The question is, “How do I get one? How does one person become passionate about me? How can I identify the shared aspiration between that one person and the change I’m chasing in the world and who we are as a startup?”

That can’t happen in a survey. That can’t happen in kind of these clinical, traditional clinical marketing research ideas or big data or just simply looking at demographics. Those may point you in the right direction, but you’re never going to get validation on that one, simply asking someone on a survey, “Are you passionate about us?”

So you have to be in front of your customer. You have to be out there, taking guesses at who you think shares your aspiration and why and to what level that matters and what level the impact, the emotional impact, will have on their lives. Getting to that one person is going to teach you… Oh, let me make a caveat too. One person that isn’t your mom and that isn’t your best friend. They’re going to be nice to you and say they’re passionate about it, without ever maybe even ever understanding what you’re doing; but that first customer.

So there’s lots of ways to experiment in lo-fi and safe-to-fail ways. But the question that I think is vital to building passion is, “Can we win one passionate advocate to our cause, one passionate advocate that is completely bought-in and impacted by the change we want to see in the world?”

If we can do that, and we can understand why that person is passionate, then we have a shot at replicating that maybe to make it into five people. If we can make it into five people, we can get 10 and so on and so forth.

So that’s the critical question when it comes to brand development. It isn’t about… Oh. Well, everybody who is in this demographic really likes the color green. Therefore, you should be green. That’s the questions that the conventional model are asking.

The question that we’re trying to ask is, “How does one person become passionate? And how can you understand the stream, the value stream, that they took to get there?”

Jonathan Crowe: All right. Well, here’s one question that’s shifting gears just a little bit. Who owns brand within the company?

Jeremiah Gardner: It’s shared. It’s absolutely shared between your audience and your organization. I think we can go into a high-level, kind of philosophical discussion about all this. But at the end of the day, customers will attribute value or render you completely irrelevant to them.

So you can have the greatest brand in the stance of the conventional model’s world, the best logo, the most amazing story, written paragraphs, and most incredible messaging. If it never connects with an audience, then you don’t have anything. So brand, as a relationship, is shared.

Jonathan Crowe: Right.

Jeremiah Gardner: Yeah, go ahead.

Brant Cooper: Well, it’s a great question. I think Jeremiah is spot on. I think that in the same way that the CTO is largely responsible for product, I think it’s likely that the CMO is largely responsible for brand, if you’re down the path of having that many people. Ultimately, it’s the CEO. Ultimately, it’s really what Jeremiah says.

In the same way that everybody should own the product as well, I think that when it comes to lean and cross-functional teams and trying to determine whether you’re building products that people want and having a hypothesis-driven feature additions even… I think in the same way that everybody should own that, your product managers and your customer support and your sales people and your marketing people, as well as your engineers and designers, I think that everybody also owns a piece of brand. Everybody should be thinking about it.

That’s actually how you get out of the mindset that brand is your logo and your tag line and your color palette, because everybody takes ownership of it. Ultimately, the CEO needs to not pass those things off onto departmental silos.

I think that a lot of entrepreneurs are scared of the word brand, and a lot of marketing… They think it’s sort of this black box, and they can’t understand it. So the buck really stops with the CEO, in the sense that he or she needs to go ahead and understand brand as much as possible and realize it’s not just the assets. It’s not just the artifacts, but it’s everything that they do, as well as really everything that they don’t do that has interaction with customers is affecting the brand.

So if the CEO can start understanding brand in that way, then he or she will know that it really is the responsibility of everybody in the organization.

Jonathan Crowe: Right. Right. I think you can see in the organizations that really get it right. You can see how it’s there, and it pops up kind of in every aspect of the business, not just the customer support. It’s also in the sales, the marketing, and in the product itself too.

Brant Cooper: Yeah, exactly right.

Jonathan Crowe: Well, I think jumping into what I think is kind of the most fun part here… I know you guys are including some case studies in the book. You’re diving into some companies that you’ve found that are doing some really cool things around developing a lean brand. Can you talk a little bit about that? Maybe… Have you found any examples of companies doing some cool, just kind of quick and easy experiments around developing their lean brand?

Jeremiah Gardner: Sure. One of my absolute favorites is a company called Betabrand, up in San Francisco. They’re kind of an off-kilter clothing company that creates things like, if you think about, like disco ball hoodies or reversible smoking jackets with skull buttons and things like that.

I think one of the things that they’ve done really, really well is to kind of be very kind of open to what their relationship with their audience ends up being. So in tons of aspects, in almost every aspect of their startup, they’re inviting customer participation. They’re inviting their audience to have a say and to participate in the building of their startup.

People are just passionate about Betabrand and about their clothes and about the story that their clothes are telling. So that’s just kind of one example of a company that I think is really getting it right. I guess there’s lots of them, and we talk about them in the book a lot and have specific case studies, but Betabrand really stands out to me as someone that has worked really hard to build that passion with their audience.

Brant Cooper: What I love about it too is that I think that when… Again, when people tend to think about brand and then even experimenting within a brand, they’re thinking about split-testing a logo, which is fine. But what we’re really trying to get to is that example that Jeremiah just gave. Really to understand your relationship with your audience, do some sort of what Jeremiah calls a dynamic artifact, so that that fashion show is actually a branding artifact.

So instead of spending your money on letterhead and pens and logos, maybe you should do a wacky event like that and understand sort of what is this relationship that you actually have with your audience.

Jeremiah Gardner: The dynamic experience will always win over something as static as a logo or color scheme that really, at the end of the day, doesn’t matter.

Jonathan Crowe: Well, it seems like there’s a couple elements that pop up from these types of experiments. What you’re pointing out is these are really good ones that can really help move companies towards establishing, another great term you guys use, the minimum viable brand. You know? There’s the minimum viable product. Everybody knows about that, how as a startup, you’re pushing to develop really kind of the one thing with the least amount of effort to get you some good feedback. So you can move forward and iterate.

You guys are talking about this same thing can be applied to branding. One of the elements that jumps out is kind of that interactivity, that it needs to be something that your audience can experience directly and interact with and you’re able to get kind of immediate feedback from. Are there any other elements that jump out like that, that you consider these are the things that should be involved in your branding experiments?

Jeremiah Gardner: It’s kind of a hard question because there isn’t necessarily like a checklist. I think this is a great example of kind of the juxtaposition between kind of the conventional branding model and the agency model and kind of what we’re saying.

In the agency model, there’s this checklist. Right? Like, we’re going to come in and do a branding process. In that branding process, we’re going to define your mission, check, your values, check, your vision, check, you know, your color scheme, check. We got all these things, and the idea is that if we add all these things together, the end of the equation will equal a brand. You walk away with this deck that is your brand, and now you have one. You know? Now, you just need to broadcast it to the world, and everyone will love it.

There’s an inherent fallacy and a myth about that thinking, because a brand only takes on meaning when it’s shared with an audience. Right? And when someone can get value from it. So there isn’t necessarily… I think we avoid being prescriptive in saying that, “If you do these ten things, you’ll have a brand,” because the journey is going to be different for everybody.

So instead, what we kind of say is that, no, it’s really about being hypothesis-driven, not outcome-driven. If you’re hypothesis-driven, then you’re taking a guess. You may say something like the heart attack video or the world’s first certified single male fashion show. Those were guesses that they might connect, and they could have failed miserably. I’m guessing that… I know actually that for every big success like that, there are ten other ideas that led them there, that may have failed.

So our drive is really to say, with lean brand development, is that you have to be willing to experiment. You have to be willing to learn, and you have to be willing to move in a way that brings you towards passion, towards connection with your audience. No outside element is going to give you that. You know?

Nike made the swoosh. The swoosh didn’t make Nike. So how can you get there? Right?

Brant Cooper: So the key is that you’re focusing on different areas, depending on where you are as a startup, just like in your MVP and your product market fit. Where you are as a startup, what your resources are, are going to determine where you’re focusing your efforts on.

So what we’re prescribing is that you add… that you make sure that you’re testing… What we’re saying is that you want to make sure that you’re adding a brand test element to your value stream discovery. So if you’re following the value stream discovery framework, for example, and this applies really whether or not you’re following it specifically…

During your minimum viable product testing, you’re trying to figure out are you developing the right product. You might be starting by doing some viability tests. There’s branding elements to every one of those experiments. Your messaging and positioning are part of your branding element.

So you’re not talking just simply about… When you’re trying to do a landing page example, for example, you’re not trying to just specifically test what the product and features are. You also have to be testing whether there’s… What is the hook? What is the emotional element that gets people to convert on that page?

If you’re doing a… Really the experiments that Jeremiah were giving in the case studies are like the equivalent of a concierge viability test, where you’re actually doing things in person in order to measure what customers will do, rather than what they say they do. So those two examples are sort of like concierge viability tests for brand.

So there’s all of the type of experiments that ones are thinking about in terms of product. You can also do… You just want to make sure that you’re including a brand element, so that you’re including the emotional value.

So instead of actually just testing… This drives me nuts. Right? So I love 99designs, and I love that people can crowd source logos. But if you crowd source the logo independent of the value that you’re trying to provide a customer, it’s really a worthless experiment.

Now, it may be that you can get it at low cost. So that’s good enough. Right? So part of what we’re preaching here is that you don’t want to spend a lot of time and money developing brand artifacts when you don’t know the value that you’re creating. You don’t know the relationship that you’re in with your audience.

Jonathan Crowe: Right.

Brant Cooper: Spending too much time and money at that point is a waste. I guarantee you everybody that listens to this is thinking about either developing a logo and spending a lot of money on it, or they’ve already done it. Really what we’re trying to get these early-stage entrepreneurs to think about is… The first stab at it really is not that important. All those blog posts that tell you how to name your company are not that important.

It all represents waste because eventually, when you discover the relationship that you’re going to have with your audience based upon the product utility and the emotional impact solving problems have on your audience, until you understand that, you’re just guessing, and you’re likely going to rebrand.

Really there’s no better example. Go to the Way Back Machine and type in your favorite startup and look at the logos and the branding that they had around when they were originally started. You’ll find that they did not spend a lot of time and money on it. The original Google, the original Facebook are really… They didn’t spend a ton of money on that stuff because it didn’t matter.

What mattered in the early stage was, was the relationship based upon the product utility and the emotional value that you’re going to bring these people, regardless of whether it’s a conscious emotional value? So as much as we talk about all that, it’s not like you can walk up to somebody on the street and say, “Listen. What’s the emotional value that we could bring to you if you’re allowed to socialize with your friends online?” That’s like not how you get to it.

But if you can dive in to actually what people are doing online and how it does impact their lives, then that’s where you’re garnering the emotional value and what’s going to drive the marketing.

Jeremiah Gardner: Right. Yeah, and I think I would add to that too, is exactly what Brant just said, is just proof to the fact that everything is interconnected. So you can’t simply cherry-pick one piece, product over brand or brand over product or culture over both and these things. They’re all interconnected from your customer’s point of view.

So to kind of make the point a little bit farther about what Brant’s saying is… You think about a company like Kodak who, in the branding world, achieved nirvana, with the term, “Kodak moment.” I mean, a picture is considered their product and their company. Right? Yet, as strong as that brand is, as strong as that relationship with their audience is, they failed because they don’t evolve their product forward. Right? They eventually get disrupted and become irrelevant.

You can make an argument that the relationship with Kodak still would matter, that people still know what it is, but you can’t go as far to say that Kodak creates value today. So when you’re at an early stage, and you’re trying to keep all these things in silos, you’re thinking about it from your perspective. You need to change that perspective to think about it from your customers’ perspective and realize that they receive value from all of the things that you do, from brand to culture to product, that ultimately impact their lives and satisfy them on a product level and lead them to passion on a brand level. The impetus for both becomes the culture that you’ve developed inside of your building.

So I think that’s a really important thing to keep in mind when you’re trying to discover and deliver value of any sort, whether you’re a large company or you’re super early-stage startup.

Jonathan Crowe: Well, that’s great. It’s a great point to close on. So Jeremiah and Brant, thank you so much for joining us. I really appreciate your time. Definitely encourage everyone to check out the book. I know I’m really personally excited to see the finished book. Can you tell me a little bit more about where people can catch up with you guys, pre-order the book, and where they can find more from you?

Jeremiah Gardner:  Yeah. So if you go to leanbrandbook.com, you can kind of connect there. You can pre-order both the physical hard copy and a digital copy. The book will be launching in the first week of October, and we’re really excited about it. Then we’ll be off kind of doing some speaking tours, hoping actually to get out to Boston. So maybe we’ll see you there. So yeah, connect with us.

Then you can also follow us both on Twitter. I am @jeremiahgardner, and Brant is @brantcooper. We’re both pretty active there. So we’d love to connect with you guys. I know this is new stuff. So we understand that it’s going to take some time to really have some conversations around this stuff to help startups really create more valuable brands.

Jonathan Crowe: Great. All right. Well, thanks again, guys. I really appreciate your time and looking forward to connecting again in the future.

Jeremiah Gardner: Thanks, Jonathan.

Brant Cooper: Thanks, Jonathan.

Jonathan Crowe: All right. Thank you. Take care.

Newsletter signup bottom

Photo courtesy of Brant Cooper and Jeremiah Gardner

Senior Content Manager