How respect for planning turned Tal Rabinowitz’s vision into a respected brand.
“The best and most successful brands are coherent. Every aspect of what they do and who they are reinforces everything else.” – Wally Olins
Tal Rabinowitz wanted nothing more than to incorporate meditation into her daily life and establish a more regular practice. After looking for a place that would allow her to experience guided meditations at convenient times, she found that no such place existed; instead, she decided to open the very place she was searching for: The DEN Meditation.
It Started With An Idea…
Rabinowitz approached Dreamentia with her idea. “I had a very strong vision of wanting to make sure that [meditation] was mainstream, easy for anyone to digest, and could help spread the message that meditation really is for EVERYONE—you don’t have to wear white, you don’t have to be a hippie. ANYONE can and should do it,” she says. But with the goal to open the doors in less than 6 months, Rabinowitz realized early in the conceptualization stage that she needed cohesive branding in order to powerfully introduce her idea to the masses. “Branding was important to me from the onset of the idea… I am an idea person, and very creative. However, I need help actualizing my ideas. I knew I needed someone to help me create the logo and the vibe of our website and all of our materials from my descriptions and needs.”
How The Idea Has Shaped the Brand
Along with Dreamentia’s collaborative efforts, Rabinowitz used her background in entertainment to craft the marketing plan and proper messaging that would optimally place The DEN as an industry leader, but not without some careful considerations to make in this process. Rabinowitz adds, “Meditation was not a household name yet, so I needed to be strategic and smart about its messaging, and get it out there in order to help make people comfortable walking in the door. I wanted my message to be really clear that this was universal, and if every part of The DEN didn’t incorporate that feeling, it would not be what it is.”
With this in mind, Dreamentia and The DEN took to social media at the company’s infancy to launch the #myDENtity campaign, in which followers were encouraged to use the titular hashtag to promote meditation’s objectivity—that anyone can do it, no matter your identity. Rabinowitz remembers that “[it] was a lot of fun…we were at a lot of different events selling the campaign to people and really getting to know people and chat up about the business. It was a lot of fun interacting with future clientele and representing our product.”
By sticking to her plans, The DEN and Dreamentia were able to translate Rabinowitz’s ideas onto other marketing media, including brochures, website, email marketing, and more.
The 2-Year Mark
It has been two years since The DEN’s doors opened, and it has grown into a sought-after oasis within the bustling chaos of the City of Angeles. Its clientele is passionate yet diverse, but all sharing a common love of peace and mindfulness. Along the way, The DEN built a robust email list, and a loyal social media following that has facilitated a two-way conversation between the studio and its clients. The mindfulness and local communities have also taken notice, as Rabinowitz and The DEN have been featured in magazines, online articles, and television programs.
If that’s not enough, The DEN has created two brand extensions, DEN Teacher Training and DEN Rental Space, and has opened two new locations in Silverlake and Studio City with eyes on more to come. Additionally, The DEN’s offerings have extended to more than just workshops and classes—students can drop-in for a private session at any time, take certification training to enhance their practice, and even go on meditation retreats around the world – making Rabinowitz’s goal of transforming meditation into a household name more than a reality; truly, her idea has turned into a mindfulness movement.
The Brand Moving Forward
Despite all of this success, Rabinowitz has found that marketing is more important now than ever, but for different reasons: “We joke at so many of our meetings now that we’re discussing completely new things, which means we are growing. Issues we had in the beginning are no longer the issues we have now, and therefore, ideas and concepts are changing as well. I think we created a very strong look and brand to start with, and that has given us the freedom to grow and concentrate on other parts of the business, with that as a strong foundation.”
But in thinking of The DEN’s humble marketing beginnings, she also keeps the following idea in mind as the company continues to soar: “As we evolve, it’s easy to forget about your brand; you need to make sure you take the journey together. But now that we are a little bit more established, marketing needs to help us grow and expand to new audiences and more awareness.”
A Few Words of Advice
And for those of you looking to establish a business from the ground up, Rabinowitz would like to impart you with these words on marketing and branding: “I felt it took us a good 6 months to be ahead of our schedule and promotions, versus them being ahead of us. I would say, even though there is so much going on, remember your marketing schedule and try to create it early (which, when opening a new business, can be difficult, as you are creating it as it goes)… Yes, a great product is tantamount, but a great product that nobody knows about doesn’t help anybody.”