This is how I took a startup during the pandemic (a luxury brand in the adventure vehicle space), from zero to $4 million in revenue without even launching.
How did I leverage the human need for freedom and turn it on its head with a launch right at the start of the pandemic in March of 2020?
To make things more of a challenge, we’re talking about a luxury brand in the expedition adventure vehicle space that had to live up to its name, Nimbl, and its tagline, Freedom to Roam. (The rebrand is covered fully here.)
What Every Luxury Brand Must Know: Dreams Have No Expiration Date
This human need for freedom has always existed, an important point to embrace whether one is a startup, a luxury brand, a disruptor brand, or a brand refreshing itself that’s lost its appeal.
During this time that society was derailed by an epidemic, we were fortunate to be able to navigate a course and live up to the name of the brand, Nimbl.
This ultimately helped us steer clear of some dangerous terrain due to some good luck, stubbornness, and resilience.
One of the key tools, besides our culture and product, was the ad campaign that used mystique, humor, and a definite unexpected voice in this space which has tended to be very “Alpha Male” in its branding.
This defiant approach formed the foundation for an incredible ad campaign for Nimbl.
Primed for Future Growth
From day one, Nimbl has been an aspirational brand backed by a level of craft, detail, and qualities often only found in nautical vessels due in large to its head designer, Steve Kozloff.
Some put “aspirational branding” as being beyond the scope of the consumer’s price point, but that’s not how I see it or use this.
As per Wikipedia, “An aspirational brand and its products can command premium pricing in the marketplace over a commodity brand.”
The “aspiration” here is reflected by the fact that we built this brand on what people do and what people desire plus the timeless value of “freedom” reflected in our slogan and message, “Freedom to Roam,” the foundation for growth is solid.
Other brands in this space focus on technical gadgets and shiny features.
Nimbl focuses instead on the adventures of its customers, knowing the technical attributes are there to fuel this aspiration.
We expect the business to double next year and not make the mistake of thinking about and talking about “features” but instead the quality of experience, built for those who enjoy adventure, independence, and being on the move.
Brands built on that foundation are built for sustainable and rapid growth.
Brands that are built on something else run out of gas very quickly.
The way we conveyed this was through the ad campaign we launched in 2020.
How Do You Make Your Brand Be a Glimpse of the Future?
This is covered in three core factors you must always use:
- It’s in the story you tell.
- The hope you instill.
- The dream that you resuscitate.
That’s right: resuscitate. As brands, we are bringing dreams back from the dead.
Dramatic? Maybe. But it’s true.
Here’s how I did that for Nimbl in their launch and ad campaign.
FIRST TEASER AD:
EMBRACING THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM:
LIKE A CONDOMINIUM IN ANY BIG CITY, IT’S ALL ABOUT THE VIEW:
CELEBRATING THE EDGE OF ADVENTURE:
Bringing The Nimbl Story to Life
The final component was celebrating the human component of those who bring the brand life with their craft, skill, and passion with this video which we created:
When elevating any brand into “luxury” status, remember to sell what your product or service makes possible and don’t get lost “selling your wares.”
Use this to power up.
Need more, reach out or ask about my 8-week Masterclass.