Sep 19, 2008

Advantages to startup companies.

There are loads of things that are lost in a corporate enviroment. Most important being the flexibility of focus and the learning that you gain in it. Google is an exception, they aren't a startup anymore nor are they under the standard tag of corporations. My take on startups is that while the money is far lesser in the start compared to what you would get at an established company, there are certain fundamental things that people get an advantage over that's worth the lesser money.

The laying of foundations.
If you are in a startup, there are no ground rules. If you are on online startup, there are far lesser rules. There are established patterns of success of course, but very few people actually know what it would take to succeed. So you set targets and you keep shifting targets or revamping your models. What is so hot about this?

The fact is that everything you do is an exploration. You try something like ad sales, you figure it doesn't work out and then you work out something else. This is an advantage a lot of the online companies have over the manufacturing ones. The latter are forced to release a product, then shape it and there are many many many more man hours and risks and perfections involved. Take for example the manufacturing of a car. Now every part being produced takes a lot of manhours, expertise and a dedicated team. But the dedicated team have a routine job. The feedback comes only after the release of a product, or before the planning of production itself. Not during the phase of delivery.

This is where a company like Google is king, because they release half a product (note not half assed) and then see the trends of usage among their users and the way the "semi product" is embraced and then shape it up accordingly. An example: Gmail.

The identity (flexibility in experimentation)
A lot of the stuff I have learnt are the do's and don'ts when it comes to brand identity. Some corporations have had tremendous insight (or plain luck) into choosing an identity that is flexible. Again being a Google fangirl, I shall refer to the Google Logo. All it took into account was the colorful playful image of an array of colors and not restricted to something as hard as say Starbucks. Starbucks have grounded a range (or rather a set of colors) that have to be used and cannot be toyed with.

Now compare that to what we have in Google. (Note all of these pictures are copyright of Google and I have just uploaded the content here for viewing).

See the flexibilty and innovation? Apple's new logo as well can be used against a multitude of backgrounds. What is the point of this paragraph? When you are in a startup be flexible to the brand identity. When you are still establishing yourself, it is fine to experiment around. And when Microsoft and Google can actually allow their logos to be changed, why not someone who is just starting to establish themselves?