It’s unlikely you’ve heard of the company called Huy Fong Foods.
Yet, if you’ve got even a passing interest in hot sauce, you know their product, Sriracha Chile Sauce.
The clear bottle with the rooster has achieved a quasi-iconic look.
In a world where digital presence can determine success or failure and a company’s website serves essentially as its face to the outside world, the Huy Fong Foods website offers this:
I think we can conclude that the company doesn’t believe in branding (or outsourcing graphic design).
The page devoted to Sriracha offers a perfunctory narrative, not exactly the storytelling techniques we’ve come to espouse.
First, every memorable brand whether its Apple, Southwest Airlines or Sriracha starts with a great product that stands out from the competition. The product delivers on its promise to the buyer.
Sriracha does this.
Then the question becomes, how do we get people to notice much less feel an emotional connection to the product?
In the case of Sriracha, I suspect the company got a little lucky.
It gained early cult status among the foodies with word of mouth inspiring more people to try the sauce. As the pool of people spreading the word kept expanding, the number of people trying and loving the sauce also kept increasing, ultimately creating this self-virtuous cycle still at work today.
I doubt if Huy Fong Foods planned this. It just happened.
Look, it took courage for David Tran to scrape together $50K in family savings, start the company, invent Sriracha and push for distribution.
At some point, sales will hit a plateau and, if he wants to continue growing he’ll need to find the courage to invest in building the brand.
And perhaps hire a graphic designer.