Building a global brand through crowdfunding

Client: Macedonia-export

Challenge: Using crowdfunding as an approach to validate a product on the global marketplace, and discover the ideal customer segment.

Outcome: Conducted a fully funded campaign with backers from over 50 countries worldwide. Global market-validation for the product and new customer segments identified.

Macedonia-export is an international company specialized in branding, export and strategic consulting services. By bridging the communication between manufacturers and sellers worldwide, they help brands establish powerful brand positioning and accelerate sales by setting up a reliable distribution network.

Since 2006, the founders have been building and growing powerful brands and have launched two separate brands of their own. TIP OF THE WEEK is a well known concept in the Balkan region; a series of interactive books for personal and professional development written by enthusiasts and successful businessmen and women coming from the Balkans. It contains 40 practical and educational tips on how to improve, make a change and become more successful in various fields in your everyday life. The main idea behind the TIP OF THE WEEK concept is to provoke readers to be more open to changes because only by changing ourselves and by focusing on implementation of new ideas, we can become better day by day.

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Since the book was only selling in the Balkans, the team behind TIP OF THE WEEK wanted to uncover new opportunities and expand their brand to new international markets. Diving into the pool of immense competition in the field, the team approached Solveo with the aim to ‘join forces and build the international brand together as the leaders in brand strategy in the region.’ Diving into the pool of global competition, and building a brand worldwide is not an overnight activity. However, discovering the right persona, understanding who our readers globally are and testing the product before launch, is the perfect start. As printing thousands of copies of the book, and global distribution without any upfront market validation was not an option, we discovered a unique opportunity for low-budget rapid market testing with a strategy to go forward with a crowdfunding campaign. During the yearly collaboration, we split the process in four key phases: pre launch strategy, design strategy, the launch and the release. 
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The pre-launch strategy
At the very beginning of the process it was crucial to understand who the current customers are, what are their interests, what they are doing in their everyday lives, in order to create and understand who we will be targeting globally. Our teams created a set of hypotheses and personas that we would test with the launch of the crowdfunding campaign.
As running a crowdfunding campaign follows the same steps as actually launching a product on market only at a faster scale, we needed to cover all the steps of an actual launching of a product. From a design strategy and building a brand DNA to a holistic marketing and distribution strategy the Solveo team carefully crafted the design and launch strategy.

The design strategy
‘Good design is good business’. Creating a consistent and powerful visual identity was the next step towards a successful campaign. Our team made sure that our brand image is strong, unique and communicates with the customers. Creating a compelling video story followed with a visual website, we made sure that all visual communication is aligned and consistent across all customers touchpoints.

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The launch
Once everything was ready, we launched the crowdfunding campaign which lasted for 30 days. As the strategy behind this approach to really find the right product-market fit, in the duration of the campaign our team of marketing and growth experts, tested various user personas through carefully designed campaigns and sales tactics. The omni-channel distribution strategy uncovered loads of opportunities for the product and crystallized the perfect user persona.
The campaign ended funded, and our teams had the perfect brand and growth strategy for Tip of the week. 

The release
After eight months of preparation and execution, together our joint teams released and distributed the international version of the book which was sold in more than 30 countries around the world. 

Launch with a bang

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