I’ve recently launched a web app with a friend. These are a few thoughts on why we did it.
We didn’t have an ‘idea moment’. There was just this frustration in our own workflow, which kept cropping up.
Add to that a shared desire to make a digital tool plus the skills to make one (if not the money), we set out to make a simple fix.
We also didn’t set a launch date (rightly or wrongly), and we didn’t set out a road map straight away. In fact, our format and even our name changed during development.
All of this doesn’t seem very typical ‘startup’. It’s a little oddball. I even wonder how we kept going. But we did and we’re here, we have a product now and we believe in it.
But let’s back up a moment, and get back to the “why?”.
Brandpage has two of us as founders – we’re a couple of freelance friends who regularly collaborate on web design projects. Between us we happen to cover both sides of brand identity design – a designer and an implementer.
Collaborating on any typical ‘brand and website’ design project meant we needed to share and track brand identity assets and information between us. It needed to be done without us being in the same location and often while the brand creation was still in progress. Normally, this would involve cloud storage folders and emails. Lots of emails (and who needs more of them?).
It seemed a messy process to us. Giving and getting clarity on things like final logo files, brand colours and brand fonts was almost impossible to do efficiently.
There was a clear frustration with the sharing and tracking of brand identity assets and information.
What we did about it
We decided to build a tool that made it easier for us, but without complicating our workflow. All we wanted was to bring together digital brand assets and key information so they were in one place. Who needs another workflow step or yet another storage system, right?
So we based it largely around Dropbox integration. It works with your existing files, not through uploading and managing yet another set of assets. After all, that would make more work for someone.
2 years later
You may wonder “Why does it take so long to make a super simple solution?” Well, that’s because we’ve been using it ourselves all that time, and making adjustments slowly along the way. We soft-launched a free prototype a year ago, but decided it needed work before it had proper value. We also did it all without funding.
In those 2 years we’ve been talking about it, designing it, building prototypes, refining features, and finally launching.
It’s improved our efficiency and impressed our clients.
The result is very simple, but we like that. We worried a little if it was enough of a product, but we quickly realised there’s value in it’s simplicity – it doesn’t get in the way and makes you more efficient.
So far it’s improved our efficiency and impressed our clients. I hope it can do the same for you.
Brandpage is aimed at brand designers, but it actually helps anyone needing to share brand details for any reason – such as startups with distributed teams.