The folks at CB Insights made a list of the most common reasons for startup failure, based on the post-mortems of 101 failed startups. One of the most common reasons cited by founders was “Poor marketing”. (CB Insights, 2019)
It turns out that many startups ignore these efforts because they don’t see marketing and branding as a priority at this early stage. While the startup’s finances, logistics, staff hires, etc. are of course very essential, startup marketing is also very important to a company’s customer outreach, loyalty, sales, and overall success.
Companies either sell their products in a way that doesn’t attract an audience, or they don’t understand their potential customers’ needs so they end up pushing the wrong features. You can have a very good product with an actual market fit, but if no one knows about it and isn’t appealing, it won’t sell. What’s more, to reach product-market fit, you need to…. well, do marketing. Often, captivated by their product or service, founders neglect the efforts to make a “personal” connection with their buyers, even at the earliest stages.
Today, let’s look at why startup marketing is important and what valuable tips are available. While you read, try to imagine how you would achieve all of the points mentioned below with a little bit of imagination. Don’t be afraid to think out of the box. Marketing nowadays is beginning to look like art. Nobody wants to see or read something boring which doesn’t bring the “wow” effect. The magic of marketing allows you to showcase your startup in any way you like.
Don’t always follow the rules and be the one who makes the trends, not the one who follows them. Don’t copy, make others copy you and your content.
One of the integral components of a startup’s development is establishing a distinguishable and individual company identity. This is one of the very first things to keep in mind when thinking about your marketing strategy. A company’s identity is much more than colors and logo, it allows you to express core values, mission, and sets a clear vision on how your startup plans to accomplish its goals.
Good marketing strategy helps a startup to set itself apart from its competition. Consumers nowadays are getting more and more conscious. With the help of this great invention called the Internet, they have access to multiple sources and always research products before buying them. So, how are you going to communicate your advantages? What makes your product better than the others? What gaps in the markets are you filling?
The ability to effectively promote these distinctive features can attract a wide range of new clients who are looking for the special product or service offered by you.
The basic definition of a brand is to inspire loyalty within the customer base. Thousands of different corporate names, brand images, and advertisements target customers every day.
A newly founded startup must challenge itself to create a distinct marketing campaign to capture the attention of consumers and satisfy the expected quality to retain them in the future.
Digital marketing has had a huge impact on how brands communicate with their customers. Digital campaigns will help your startup build personal connections with clients and once this relationship is developed, it takes a minimal effort for you to keep them. Other than engaging clients, social media marketing helps you boost traffic to the company's website and promote new offerings.
Metrics for success
Marketing Metrics are as much of importance as any other number you are looking out for in your startup’s journey. They help you measure the success of campaigns, whether they attracted new clients, and even where they are from.
Startups can customize their marketing approach to specific locations and demographics. These tools will help you find out more about the customer’s buying behavior and identify new opportunities. Metrics makes it easier to discover which offerings are useful and which products should be created to match the consumer’s needs or which campaigns are efficient and which should never be repeated.
Companies must carefully adjust their approach while developing a marketing plan. From creating a website to hosting a webinar, these techniques must be planned out in advance In order to be effective.
These are some of the reasons why marketing is important even for startups. Your marketing ideas should come before any other process.
Among all methods available, startups can use these key elements:
- Creating a website that showcases the brand
- Video marketing to grab the customer’s attention
- PPC campaigns to reach a wide customer base
- Social media marketing for more personal customer relationships
- Email marketing
- Search engine optimization
Building your brand with an active blog or social media presence can not only engage and entertain your followers but can also show your potential customers that you take pride in your work.
Something that nobody will tell you is that even if you follow a marketing plan based on the most popular books in this industry, nobody will pay attention to you or your startup if your content is boring and if your ideas are not original. Make sure that you are doing something different and memorable, and make sure to always measure all your actions and results, and keep iterating until you find the best fit with the best strategy.
Also, don’t overthink recruiting the best marketer in your city, just think about what makes your startup unique and how to communicate that with your potential customers. Engage in the process and show everyone that you believe in what you do.