BRANDING & VISIBILITY
Brand recognition and other reactions are created by the accumulation of experiences with the specific product or service, both directly relating to its use, and through the influence of advertising, design, and media commentary. A brand is a symbolic embodiment of all the information connected to a company, product or service.
Choosing a business name can be a difficult task but one worth giving careful consideration.
Ensure that you’ve checked your proposed business name has not already been taken or is not similar to other brands – also check that group will be available. Once you have named your business to be, that is pretty much it. You are stuck with the name for as long as you got that business, unless you choose to re-brand.
When choosing a name for your business consider what you will be selling and to whom. Your name needs to suit the product or at least reflect your style. Also think about how would your name work with advertising campaigns or slogans you got planned. By making brand name meaningful and representative of your product as well as easy to spell and pronounce you would ensure that customer would be able remember it easily.
Clean logos work best.
If you have to introduce the graphic in your logo ensure that it is simple and consistent with your style. Logo is a stamp for your brand and needs to be understood and readable by others as well as easy to use on packaging and on store front.
Avoid busy multi-colored logos. Follow this simple rule ~ if your logo can not be made into a white version on alpha background it is probably too complicated.
Now that you have the brand made for success and your customers can easily find you, let’s talk about your product.
We recommend to set your permissions to MOD/COPY/ NO TRANS to increase your sales. Here is the reason why.
1. No MOD Items can not be adjusted to suit individual use, shape or style. If I am unable to adjust hair, pants fit or tint clothing it is very unlikely I would wear it. I rather not spend my money on no mod item and risk never being able to wear it.
Don’t start me with prim attachments – if they are no mod your item is pretty much useless as no one would change their shape to suit prim attachments – not dramatically anyway. Our goals is to increase number of people wearing your clothing.
2. No Copy items are easily lost in the inventory as they can not be multiplied, especially if people are making outfits via appearance which saves items you are wearing in a separate folder for quick changes. If items are no copy and outfit is saved it would be hard to track them down. Also no copy items do not show in search as much as copy items, so people who have large inventories and are looking for item by it’s name in the inventory search will wait long time for it to load, often giving up and wearing something else. When you search for the item and you can not find it you are less likely to wear it. Again we want people wearing your clothing and jewellery often so that others can inspect it giving you free promotion.
When I speak to designers who make items no copy and no mod they usually give me 2 reasons: I am afraid people will copy my items and I want my customer to be able to buy my product as a gift. Please consider the following view points in regards to these.
If someone is determined to copy your item that are mod/no copy or no mod/copy – they WILL copy them regardless of what you do with permissions.
People rarely buy gifts, they happen far less than shopping for personal use. Would you rather disadvantage all your customers for the price of few? If ability to offer gift service is important to you list your items on SLX or introduce vendor that offers no copy option. I am sure that the next person would rather have them copy as well.
Another reason for no copy is that people can give the items away if they do not like them. This is disadvantage to you since, person who got the item from someone else would not buy it from you.
Forget about permissions even, if there is one thing that you would change about your fashion empire let it be this – especially if you are making clothing for men.
Having clothing only on one layer is totally useless to your customer and makes you appear lazy as a business. Making something on all layers will ensure that customer would be able to wear jackets on the top of the shirts and knits. Most people like to mix and match and if you do not offer the clothing on all layers they would not be able to do that. And guess what happens?
You got it! People would not wear your clothing as often ~ no one likes dressing out of the box.
Since making clothing on one layer is as easy as providing them on all 3 there is no reason not to.
You have all seen SL bug which causes pants to droop sharp edges around your feet. This bug is caused when alpha texture is used to create pants. Extend your texture across the whole surface of the template and this will give your pants sharp appearance. Although I have seen instances where designer has already done this and mentioned bug still occurs, it is more unlikely it would if you take care of this detail.
Ben Vanguard from SLmen explains how to overcome this problem in more detail in his post.
Photos of items
Have you ever wished that you have sort of a wardrobe in Second Life where you can view clothing before you wear it. Having to wear clothing just to see what the hell did you buy a month ago is a drag. Time that it takes to load clothing makes dressing in Second Life sometimes difficult and long process.
If on the other hand, you include a photo of the product or vendor with each purchase it will help your customer see what the item is without having to actually wear it. Often photos will load quicker than trying to wear the item of clothing just to see what it is. There are only few designers that do this (Shai comes to mind) setting them apart ahead of the rest in such a simple way.
Naming your items & landmark
What does your item tell customer about your store if folder is simply called: Black Jeans and has no landmark in it?
By naming your items correctly you will appear more professional, together and unconsciously customer would have more confidence in your product instantly. Also they would be able to identify it with your brand without having to go to properties and creator’s picks.
If you give them LM with their purchase they can come back to your store more easily and share LM with their friends. Please do not make your LM no modify and no transfer ~ the whole point of introducing the LM is so that it can be transferred or renamed by the owner to something memorable. Also if you have 5 store locations there is no need to give 5 LMs in one package ~ customer really needs only one ~ your main location.
Here is the example of the GOOD naming practice: BRAND NAME ~ Item name ~ color ~ left/right ~ attachment point/layer/additional info
I am sure that you have had bad customer service in Real Life if not Second Life to understand that good customer service can do to your brand’s reputation.
Bad customer service in Second Life includes:
- misrepresentation of your product or service
- selling items that infringe copyright
- selling items that are close copies of other brands not only in product but presentation ~ brand confusion
- not responding to customer questions/complaints/enquiries
- not setting expectations on how the customer can communicate with you (eg. holiday, capped IMs, note card)
- not disclosing permissions, refunds/exchanges & store policy
- palming off items not received enquiries to Linden Lab instead of redelivering items
- not helping customer understand the product and not having clear instructions for your product or absence of them all together
- abusing, arguing with and muting abusive customers (good businesses do not do this in RL why would we do it in SL?) In saying this I think we can all scream: “But there have been exceptions”. And so there certainly are, but this is our noble aim.
For more information on Marketing your product visit this link.
We hope that you have found this article useful and we wish you all the success.