Dropbox Is Textbook: Great Product, Spot On Brand Identity And An Awesome Rewards Program

Dropbox is growing like crazy–they went from 4 million to 25 million members in just over one year–because the cloud-based storage company provides exactly what people need, and they do it in a no-nonsense manner that people relate to and appreciate.

According to Fast Company, Dropbox isn’t interested in demonstrating the brilliant and endless potential of the cloud, unlike most of its competitors, which are constantly pointing out how the cloud can do anything and everything, how magical it has become, what a miracle of modern computing science it is. Instead, Dropbox has focused on translating the service’s potential in the simplest and most relevant way possible: have access to all your files from anywhere.

Copywriters take note. “We’re definitely allergic to a lot of the technical terms,” says Dropbox cofounder Drew Houston. “Anything with the word sync in it, or cloud, or drive–it sounds too much like a utility, and you just wouldn’t expect a great company to have a word like drive in it. It doesn’t sound right.”

Well over half of Dropbox’s growth comes from its referral program–users receive 2GB of storage for free when first registering, but can earn additional 250MB for each time another user is referred (up to a limit of 8 GB).

“We have a zero advertising budget,” Houston says. Yet “people refer their friends like crazy,” adds cofounder Arash Ferdowsi.

Editor’s Note: Please click this custom-coded link if you want to start using Dropbox. For those who do, thanks in advance for adding a free quarter gig of storage to my account.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.