Can You Launch a Brand in 24 Hours?

Digital Tools Make the 6-Month Production Cycle a Dinosaur

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I was recently on a conference call with a large agency, and we were discussing the logistics behind building and introducing a new brand's promotion website. First one red flag came up, and then another and another, and suddenly the production schedule was approaching six months. We all laughed, wondering if this is really what it takes to make good stuff happen.

It begged the question, do brands really need to wait this long, invest this much and act this slowly? Which then prompted an interesting discussion around our agency about how easy our digital tools have made creating online and social presences. Far from requiring six months, we started wondering how quickly we could launch a brand.

Could a group of smart, creative people launch a brand in 24 hours or less? I think so.

There's a time and place for six-month production cycles. But the brand-building toolbox has matured to the point where it's possible to begin marketing a brand's product or service, telling a shareable story, communicating with customers and handling sales transactions -- all in a single afternoon.

By the way, none of those things requires a website. Facebook, Twitter and YouTube outposts aren't secondary identities anymore, and in fact have quickly become logical first destinations for fans, customers and inquiries. And beyond those, there are countless additional platforms that allow a brand to dig deeper, tell multidimensional stories, launch campaigns and collect revenue.

Of course, this isn't about the elimination of the website -- yet. But the website is now secondary to the launch event. A brand's goal should be getting to market fast, proving the success of the product, and getting traction out the gate on Day One. All of which can be accomplished while the website is being constructed in the background.

So what exactly would a 24-hour launch look like? It varies from brand to brand, but the method doesn't, and it's not revolutionary: an audience is defined, a brand voice is established, strategies are constructed, content is crafted and products are positioned. Social channels are selected, paying attention to the the intended audience. And voila, a brand is brought to life.

And here's the important part: don't stop moving. Keep making decisions. There's a huge temptation to over-complicate the process, and that's what turns a 24-hour production schedule into a six-month bureaucratic nightmare. No one cares if you tweak things tomorrow. launch today.

Sure, this won't be possible for every brand. Probably not even for most brands. Approval processes and layers of management would become roadblocks for many. But for the handful of marketing chiefs and startup CEOs with the power to make things move, the opportunity awaits. And as agencies craving to be pushed, we're here, ready for the challenge.

Darryl Ohrt is global creative director, Mash+Studio.
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