Free Chapter

SBFunnel offers you a powerful and tested tool for understanding, developing, implementing and maintaining strong brands, that deliver a unique customer experience to hack your growth.


Within this book, you will learn:
  • How to understand brands from customers' and entrepreneurs' perspective to form unique relationships.
  • How to develop and communicate unique brand stories to engage your customers.
  • How to find your product-market fit and upgrade it to brand-market fit.
  • How to use SBFunnel tool to systematically answers questions among proposed SBFunnel building blocks.
  • How successful book co-creators (like BellaBeat, GoOverseas) and other startups (like Buffer, Zappos) succeed in answering those questions to build powerful brands.


Co-created by

More than 40 startups and other stakeholders from 4 different continets:


Successfully funded on Kickstarter and
Indiegogo (total > 1,3 million USD).


Received extensive VC funding
(total > 33 million USD).


Included in best accelerator programs
(Y Combinator, Berkeley accelerator).

Among them BellaBeat, Celtra, 4th Office, Teaman & Company, Degordian, Layer, Twindom, Svinaweb, The 1947 Partition Archive, Sellegit, GoOverseas, FlyKly, Tutton, Flowpro, EventIQ, Red Pitaya, MyTraining, Eventable, Tagplay, CalypsoCrystal, Build&Imagine.

Other cases included Outfit7, Airbnb, Blue Apron, Red Bull, Coolest, Buffer, Twitter, Dropbox, Play-I, innocent, Lyft, Plated, SCiO, Stylebee, Apple, Uber, Vivino, Zappos, Zynga.

Topics covered in the book

Sbfunnel: entrepreneur’s
vs. customer’s view
Lessons learned →
Building block zero:
Lessons learned →
Context builidng blocks: industry,
competitors, customers, myself
Lessons learned →
Development building blocks:
story, visual elements
Lessons learned →
Implementation building blocks: internal
branding, communication, channels
Lessons learned →
Validation and evaluation building
block: brand equity
Lessons learned →
  • It is vital to understand the importance of branding among startups.
  • Brands should go beyond visualizations and should be treated as a dynamic and evolving but comprehensive entities.
  • The two-dimensional approach to branding incorporates entrepreneurs' and customers' views of the brand.
  • The SBFunnel explains the main secret of dynamic branding: although their perspectives are different, both the entrepreneur and the customers are looking at the same brand. It is entrepreneurs’ task to understand which steps to undertake through the journey in the SBFunnel to make the best and most unique customer experience.
  • ...
Get a copy
  • Treat your dreams as a starting point in the branding process!
  • Refine and clarify your dreams into a brand vision and/or mission.
Get a copy
  • Be aware of and get familiar with the industry/sector you are entering!
  • Understand, where the industry is moving and what the trends are in the area in which you want to work.
  • Understand who your target customers are or might be and how they behave.
  • Think of potential changes in customers’ behavior and how can this influence your business.
  • Be realistic about how big your target group should be in order to be able to support your growth proposition.
  • Invite your potential customers as brand co-creators. Listen to them and do not try to force them to confirm your initial ideas.
  • ...
Get a copy
  • Understand brand as a complex entity and go beyond brand visualizations!
  • Start you brand journey by developing the brand story. Use an appropriate combination of brand identity elements (features, benefits, value, culture, personality, relationship, communities) and combine them in a way that will represent a unique story.
  • When developing a story, have in mind the idea of a minimum viable brand, which can go beyond the brand’s features even from the beginning.
  • If unique, features can also reflect a brand’s uniqueness. However, they should be well combined to represent a unique story!
  • There is no single approach or combination of brand identity elements for all situations; the trick is to find the right combination for the specific brand in a specific environment and for the specific moment.
  • ...
Get a copy
  • Brand as a complex entity should be well understood by you and other team members.
  • Startup employees are the best brand ambassadors, but they need to understand what the brand stands for!
  • Unique culture and values inside the company can represent an important distinguishing element for target customers. When a startup grows, these values need to be well communicated among the company and new employees.
  • Make a winning combination: Develop a brand that will cover the specific needs and wishes of modern customers and use innovative, unconventional marketing tactics!
  • Understand communication as a dialogue or conversation that invites customers as brand co-creators and turns them into brand ambassadors.
  • ...
Get a copy
  • “Get out of the building”, as Steve Blank says, or even stay inside, but be sure you understand your customers!
  • Customers love talking, giving feedback, and expressing their thoughts about brands, but you need to be skillful in inviting and asking them properly! It is your task to know who to ask and what are good questions to ask your target customers!
  • Understand who you should invite to participate in brand validation and evaluation. Don’t ask only your friends, who will generally only confirm your ideas.
  • Invite and engage customers as brand co-creators to validate separate elements of your minimum viable brand even before you launch the brand.
  • ...
Get a copy
What our readers are saying

Get your copy today

Kindle eBook
Paperback version
Paperback version
Other markets & Corporate sales & Libraries

About authors

Maja in Mitja Ruzzir
Maja K Ruzzier Mitja Ruzzier

Maja & Mitja, wife & husband, marketer & entrepreneur, mother & father of two children.

Maja is an associate professor of marketing (at Faculty of Economics, UL), specialized in branding. Mitja started his career as an entrepreneur with his own company but recently moved to academics. Currently, he is a professor of entrepreneurship (at Faculty of Management, UP). Maja is systematic and a good observer of people and their changes in behavior. Mitja is a visionary and creative person. They have also joined forces professionally at the intersection of their primary professional areas as well as their different personal characters. In addition to being lecturers, researchers, consultants and speakers, they are the authors of several books, including Marketing for Entrepreneurs and SMEs. Read more Lately, they have begun to observe startups and their approach toward branding. In doing so, they have travelled to and visited many startups around the globe, including startups from Silicon Valley and the East Coast in the USA as well as startups in different European countries. Their passion lies in discovering the challenges of branding – specifically, how brands evolve into dynamic entities and engage entrepreneurs and modern consumers to become their co-creators. This was also the approach in their latest book, Startup Branding Funnel, which they prepared together with more than 40 co-creators (successful startup founders and other stakeholders) around the globe.