The 'brand'

The 'brand'

There's a tendency in the early stages of a business, particularly with Indie Hackers and founders from a more technical background, to swerve doing things (usually marketing things) by declaring it 'off-brand' for their startup.

There's been a lot of it around with Black Friday – everyone's favourite discount season to hate, yet at the same time, love. But you see it elsewhere too:

  • “Regular email updates are spam and spam isn't us.”
  • “Discounts might impact my brand.”
  • “Popups on our website? No thank you!”
  • “Cold-calling is a bit 70s and off-brand.”

Reality check: You're just starting out. You do not have a brand. Certainly not one you need to worry about damaging irreparably with trivial things. The priority should be survival – growing so you can turn your side-hustle into a full-hustle, or growing so you can make the next employee pay run.

So, founders. Stop hiding behind 'the brand' for the times you're personally scared to leave your comfort zone and take a risk. Because in a few years time, when your business is thriving, nobody will remember that scary old pop-up which brought you your first 1,000 subscribers.