10 RULES OF BRAND-BUILDING.
The Hundreds is a successful street brand and merchandising company. The founders Ben and Bobby have changed street culture and raised the standards for other brands within the category. In addition to influencing the culture and creating great merchandise, co-founder Bobby Hundreds shares his thoughts through the company blog. Here’s his post on the 10 Rules of Brand-Building. You can find his entire post here.
Of all the questions I get asked (“How do you get your hair like that?” “Is Ben mad at me?” “Will you stop shaking your leg?“), none is more frequent than, “Bobby, do you have any advice on building a brand?”
I get it. Everyone wants a brand these days. Kids used to wanna be musicians or athletes when they grew up (If Rick Rubin went to college today, he’d have started Def Jam Streetwear out of his dorm room, not a record label). Now you plant your identity in a T-shirt brand, advertise it in your Instagram bio, and strive to be… well… us. So you want to know how we did what we did, to get where we got.
Well, the truth of the matter is that I can’t teach you how to do that. And neither can anyone else. I can tell you how we did it, but I can’t tell you how you can do it. Every story is different. Sorry, there is no formula. You only have yourself, your circumstances, your determination, your creativity, and your assets. (And that should be encouraging and exciting, because it’s all up to you.)
I can, however, share with you some of the biggest lessons we’ve learned in building The Hundreds. Important reminders. Steadfast rules. Excerpted from my past two Agenda Emerge talks and my Tumblr Q&A, here are just some of the tenets we live by. I hope they help.
1. Put up or shut up: If you don’t have something to say, don’t say anything at all.
Have something to say. Communicate that through every thing that you do, as a brand and as a business. It is your human fingerprint. It is what makes your product unique and interesting.
The best design has an opinion. Not just in terms of a graphic T-shirt message, but also in how you cut n’ sew; it’s in the wale count of corduroy, the wash of a denim. It’s in your website’s layout, the color scheme of your retail buildout. Make a point. All of these things say something about yourself and are ultimately, a reflection of your brand. They are all a platform for you to be heard and change someone’s mind.
See the other tips here