Another Excerpt from Ramping Your Brand

In celebration of the second anniversary of its publication, I want to share an excerpt from deep inside the book. I pound heavily on the topic of iteration because it’s critical for most consumer brands to unleash exponential growth (or any kind of growth). 

Iteration, though, can’t happen unless the founder has the maturity and self-awareness to accept one fundamental truth – 

“Unfortunately, the product is the most commonly overlooked source of underperformance in new CPG brands—especially the consumable good in the package. Package symbolism is a close second. Both are something you want to get right before you have unwittingly spread half-assed, meh-tasting, confusingly labeled UPCs from Seattle to Miami in four different channels. Yes, it is possible to pivot on the product after a national roll-out. But it could take many months for the new product to replace the old, depending on how slowly it moves in some of your channels and accounts. If it’s a significant reformulation, it could necessitate switching co-manufacturers. Gulp.

The odds are slim to none that the UPCs you first sell are, across all consumer touch points, precisely what will ramp well over the long term. Trust me. SkinnyPop, Caulipower, Chobani, and other similar brands that scale immediately out of the gate strike me as pure anomalies.

Why do I make a big deal about this?

Most founders do not have experience in industrial-scale food and drink formulations. A commercial kitchen formula is not proof that your product is industrially scalable. I wish it were so.”

p. 117, Ramping Your Brand

If you’ve recently read the book, thank you!! As a bonus, I hold quarterly Q&As with the reading public on Bigmarker. The next is this Friday at 11AM PT.

Please join us and submit your questions about the book’s content in advance to [email protected].

Dr. James Richardson

[email protected]