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How I Created a Brand For My Business

Kerrie Fitzgerald

When I started The Dapper Dog Box in 2015, I knew I wanted to create a brand and product that was a bit more high end but also felt warm and inviting with a sense of family. After doing a lot of research and talking to a wide net of people, I narrowed my target customer/persona down to dogmoms- 20’s-30’s, female and that really focused on targeting modern dog parents, or people who treat their dogs like their kids. This person shops at wholefoods and trader joes and they probably throw their pet a birthday party each year:)

Through efforts on social media and email, I made all communication with customers fun and engaging and warm. I made them feel important and part of the dapper dog family. If you check out our instagram @thedapperdogbox page, this is a great example of our brand- fun, lively and warm!

With so many pet subscriptions out there I knew I had to differentiate my product so one of my selling points was to include trendy and stylish dog bandanas and bowties in the boxes and focusing on beautiful products that were not only healthy but high quality! None of my competitors included accessories, so this was where I was able to really differentiate ourselves from competition.

I really incorporated the use of storytelling into everything we did! Instead of talking about our product in sales pitch, I talked to my customers about the WHY…. Why our product was something they needed and why their dog would love it. I incorporated real humans, real people and real dogs into our marketing and strategy and it really helped to build so much trust.

After being in business one year I decided to create a more beautiful box that aligned better with the branding and high end feel. I worked with a designer, drew out my box blueprint after months of research of what would make the perfect box. I designed it keeping in mind how it would look in photos, given my target customer, this person likely has an instagram and facebook account for them or their dog and they would be sharing content online, so I decided to print on the inside of the box to capitalize that feel brand and marketing and added a fun message on the inside – ” All you need is love and a dog” and added our hashtag #thedapperdogbox and lastly we added a Call to Action, to tell people to add a photo of their dog and the box and tag #thedapperdogbox for a chance to win a free box.

This allowed us to not only get amazing brand awareness every time someone shared an image of their dog and their box, but also encouraged customers to share content to win something, so this enabled us to get a tremendous amount of user generated content and a ton of business from customer referrals.

The Box Redesign Project

After a year in business, I invested in purchasing new boxes that I was able to design myself. This was a pretty huge investment for the business so I spent months researching to create the perfect box for my customer. Everything from the inside of the box, to the position of the CTA and the fun quote was very much strategic.

The New + Improved Dapper Dog Box that I created. I spent months researching to create the perfect aesthetically pleasing box that my customer would love.

Inside of the box. I added a CTA ( Call to Action), a hashtag for branding and a quote for fun. I created this box to look perfect in images my customers would take and then share with friends.

My sales instantly increased once I launched my new boxes. This is one of the most innovative things Ive created and something I am personally really proud of.

Below is the original box I used when I started the business. I wasn’t ready to spend thousands of dollars on print plates and dye boards at the time so I used a simple company that printed boxes at small quantities. The downside was the design options they offered were minimal.

My sales instantly increased once I launched my new boxes. This is one of the most innovative things Ive created and something I am personally really proud of.

Brand Colors

For my signature color, I wanted a color that appealed to my target audience but also was gender neutral enough where it wasn’t too girly. The lavender color was an easy choice. Looking into the psychology of color, Purple combines the calm stability of blue and the fierce energy of red. The color purple is often associated with royalty, nobility, luxury, power, and ambition.

For my second signature color, I wanted a color that looked good off setting the purple, but was also friendly and gender neutral. Given how important building trust and a family connection with my customers, I knew I wanted a shade of blue. Blue is the #1 color to build trust.

Looking into the psychology of color, Turquoise signifies the calmness of blue and the growth that is represented in green. Turquoise can also has the energy that yellow transmits, becoming an uplifting color.

“I like the things around me to be beautiful & slightly dreamy, with a feeling of worldliness.”

Elliot Forson

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