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Just start #2: Why I launched a business with no logo


Just start #2: Why I launched a business with no logo

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When my team and I launched, a premium bag and luggage retailer, we had no logo. This was not because we do not appreciate a good logo. No. There are far more important considerations when starting a business. Your aim should be to test that your business can generate income as soon as possible!

The excitement…

Starting a business can be very exciting. In that excitement, it is very tempting to spend time coming up with a company name. Designing logos. Picking colours! It is very easy to spend hours debating your brand colours. If you are not design-inclined, you may find yourself spending lots of money and time engaging a designer. You will find yourself managing that designer. Going back and forth on the logo design, negotiating payments, asking for revisions!

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When we launched – we had many decisions to make and many tasks to perform. We had given ourselves a very tough deadline and very specific goals.

  • We had to do the difficult work of researching and deciding on our value proposition. What exactly were we offering our customers? Why would they choose us over other retailers?
  • We had to decide who those customers were. Based on sound reasoning and proper research.
  • We had to figure out how to win suppliers over.
  • We had to choose between various technology solutions.
  • We had to decide on the best fulfilment partners.
  • We had to create thoughtful returns, refunds and exchange policies. All critical for an e-commerce retailer.
  • We had to put in place the online store on our chosen platform.
  • We had to set up advertising accounts, strategy and targeting. Across different platforms.

On a tight budget! The logo was the least of our problems!

A thousand decisions…

I am more than convinced that in your own Startup, you have a thousand decisions to make. A hundred tasks to complete! All this with little to no-budget and very limited man/womanpower. The truth of the matter is that if your Startup is going to fail, the cause is unlikely to be your choice of logo. The biggest threat is likely to be in the other 999 decisions you must make. Devoting your time and energy on a logo is unlikely to move you forward.

Yep, you do need a logo…

Of course, at some point, you will need a logo. In our case, we only worked on the logo when our e-commerce platform was up and running. Most of the critical tasks were out of the way and we could spend time refining our logo. What did we do while we didn’t have a logo? We simple used KARYKASE as our logo. As I write this, we still don’t have a Logo Symbol – a shortened version of our logo that is used in certain applications. As important as a logo symbol is, it’s not yet important enough. There are still other growth critical tasks that need management time.

My message to you today is: if you have a business idea that you are passionate about then #justStart! Use whatever is at your disposal to start. Do not waste time on ‘busy-work’. Work that makes you feel busy but does not add much value.

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Thando is currently the Group Actuary at Clinix Health Group, having previously served as Actuary in Discovery Limited's R&D Lab. Thando loves tech, design, reading and is very passionate about the development of the African continent. Thando also runs, an omnichannel retail-tech startup. All views expressed are Thando's own and neither reflect nor are influenced by the views of affiliated companies.

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