How We Added A New Branding Package To Our Business

$20K
revenue/mo
1
Founders
2
Employees
product
Dox Design
from Ann Arbor, MI, USA
started January 2018
$20,000
revenue/mo
1
Founders
2
Employees
331K
alexa rank
5.44K
followers
2
subs
market size
$49.4B
avg revenue (monthly)
$169K
starting costs
$27.5K
gross margin
20%
time to build
10 months
average product price
$7250
growth channels
Word of mouth
business model
Consulting
best tools
Instagram, Twitter, YouTube
time investment
Full time
pros & cons
40 Pros & Cons
tips
12 Tips
Discover what tools Kaila reccommends to grow your business!
Discover what books Kaila reccommends to grow your business!
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Hello again! Remind us who you are and what business you started.

Hey, Fur Friends! Kaila here—the crazy dog-lady behind Dox Design. I’m a proud fur-mama to three dachshunds, lover of all 70s music, and the OG Swiftie (I’ve seen her on every tour, even as just an opener!)

After taking my first few years out of college in the traditional agency route, I felt restless, like my cup wasn’t being filled to the top. I had a vision, and I knew the kind of clientele I wanted to serve. I wanted to take my two favorite things—dogs and design—and create something that nobody had done before. Something big, bold, and most importantly, drool-worthy. And so, Dox Design was born!

Today, I’m proud to lead my fearless team on a mission to create strong, compelling brands that flaunt our clients’ stand-out qualities in fun and daring ways. Together, we work seamlessly to create #droolworthy brands and designs for people just like you: the doers, the dreamers, and the dog-obsessed.

Dox Design is a remote branding and packaging design firm. We help small businesses bring their brand to life through our Signature Branding Program, which includes strategy, conceptualizing, and design for the major components that encompass a brand: logo, custom illustrations, patterns, tag lines, and more.

From there, we support brands with all their design efforts beyond their foundational brand, including packaging design (our fave!) and supporting marketing materials.

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Tell us about what you’ve been up to! Has the business been growing?

We are so grateful to have seen steady (and somewhat rapid!) growth over the last few years!

Focus on YOU: what you’re doing now, what you want to be doing, and why you want to be doing it. Is it because it truly aligns with you, or is it because of what others are doing?

Since our official launch in 2018, and with the help of my fabulous team, I’ve grown Dox to become a full-time venture for more folks than just me! I now have full-time designers on our team and we are actively rebanding up to 4 businesses a month, compared to the 1 a month when we first started.

Some of the things we’ve done to make this happen are;

  • Doubling down on sales funnel actively through email marketing and social media marketing every week to find new clients
  • Launching a free Facebook group that offers lots of design & networking value
  • Launching fun, monthly freebies to drive traffic to our Instagram

The newest addition to our service suite is all-around packaging design (I said it before and I’ll say it again—it’s definitely our favorite service!) There are two routes clients can take with packaging: Box/Mailer design (specifically for client Welcome/Thank You boxes, shipping products, etc.) and Custom Packaging Design (for parts & pieces of products to stand out on shelves!) This service is often an add-on for folks who go through our Signature Branding Program. Since we’re so deeply entrenched in their brand, it’s a natural fit to move from one to the next!

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And lastly, we keep many of our clients coming back through our Design Lab, which allows them to continue hiring us on a monthly or quarterly basis for ongoing brand maintenance, including creating new marketing materials, designing courses or workbooks, and more. There are lots of different directions clients can take with this!

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What have been your biggest lessons learned in the last year?

Being an entrepreneur means we are ALWAYS learning, growing, and evolving. As I’ve reflected on the last year, one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned was the challenges that came with growing too fast. We took on too many new employees at once, but thankfully with some help, was able to rethink our hiring strategy. We pivoted and decided to leverage employees to help in other areas of the business instead of hiring a whole different contractor for those jobs—which was the best decision we could have made following up after getting a little too excited to scale!

Despite what you hear and see online and on social media every day, business doesn’t always have to be about rapid growth and scaling. You can be happy and embrace where you’re currently at and slow sustainable growth. And if you never want to scale further, if you’re comfortable with where you’re at, that’s totally ok, too!

It’s easy to get caught up in what others are doing, but there’s no need to compare yourself to other businesses. Nobody else can do what you do in the way you do it!

As for good decisions in the last year, I’d have to say it’s definitely been all of the fabulous team members we’ve brought on. Yes, we may have done it too quickly, but every new addition to our team is absolutely ROCKSTARS. They’re just as passionate and invested in the success of our clients and the business, and really band together to make amazing things happen. We support each other through and through!

As a business owner, it can be difficult to off-load some of your responsibilities, but ultimately, if it’s within your means to hire out, I 100% recommend it for the sake of your mental health and the longevity of your business. You can’t be EVERYTHING to EVERYONE!

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What’s in the plans for the upcoming year, and the next 5 years?

We definitely have some fun and exciting tricks up our sleeve for the next few years!!

First and foremost, we plan to keep growing our Signature Branding Package by making the service even more valuable to our clients, and growing our team to where we can take on 6 clients a month compared to where we are today (4 per month).

In the near future, we also plan to launch a new social media membership (follow us on social for details!) as well as an online store with templates and design goodies from our team.

For the long haul, we’re working toward being seen as the go-to “doggy designer” for all big brands and partnerships! I’m talkin’ BIG—like if Target wants to launch a dog collection, they go to Dox Design.

It’s an ambitious goal, but one I fully believe we can achieve!

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Advice for other entrepreneurs who might be struggling to grow their business?

The biggest advice I can give is that every entrepreneur has their own journey—stay true to yours! I recently decided to unfollow all other design studios because I kept comparing myself to them. Focus on YOU: what you’re doing now, what you want to be doing, and why you want to be doing it. Is it because it truly aligns with you, or is it because of what others are doing?

When you stay true to what aligns with you and your values, the growth will come—even if it doesn’t look like what you see on Instagram. Remember that social media is just a highlight reel, and you really have NO idea what’s happening in the background of these businesses. Work hard, keep your head down, and focus on serving your people to the best of your abilities.

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Are you looking to hire for certain positions right now?

We are always on the lookout for talented designers and illustrators! We love incorporating a diverse group of creatives who bring unique styles to the table for our clients.

We’re also currently searching for a stellar Virtual Assistant/Business Manager to help manage client communication and day-to-day operations. Must love dogs!

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Where can we go to learn more?

This has been a blast! Thanks so much for chatting with us again.

If you have any questions or comments, drop a comment below!

-  
Kaila Piepkow,   Founder of Dox Design

Dox Design has provided an update on their business!

About 1 year ago, we followed up with Dox Design to see how they've been doing since we published this article.

Pat Walls,  Founder of Starter Story

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