We hear startup success stories on a daily basis.
‘Company X partners with Investors Y to develop product Z’.
Seemingly endless amounts of money are mentioned, and we hear how excited the startup is to get to work. This makes it seem like nearly anyone can take an idea, create a business opportunity and turn it into a startup that goes from strength to strength.
But with an oversaturated market, unknown investment opportunities and a transparency-seeking community, you really need to think twice before you commit to your startup’s path.
As a business development manager at an internationally active software house, I see these ambitious ideas and new startup dreams on the daily. As a result, I thought it might be helpful to share some insights into the principles of startup marketing.
In the most common scenario, your newly established business has neither the platform nor the clientele to do what it needs (and wants) to do.
If I had to use a simple analogy to explain these complex startup mechanics, you’re an author.
You have your blank pages, and you want to create a bestselling book. So, let’s consider your business the blank pieces of paper in your book, and your job now is to write your story.
Where do you go from here?
1. Fill out the first page
Chances are they you’ve already committed 100% to your project. The first factor that determines the success of your business, is traction. You can have the best product out there, but no one is going to use it if they can’t find you. So this is where content marketing comes in – marketing what you create. Great good stuff isn’t going to help – you need to create the absolute best content in your industry. This content shows your potential client why you’re unique, why you’re the best and why your client should give you their money. Put this statement on the very first page of your book – in other words, at every touchpoint with a potential customer.
2. Choose your paper type wisely
You’ve made your initial statement, but are you using the best platform to show it off? Having the best product is important, as is stating why you’re the best, and the next critical step that’s often overlooked is crafting the right experience for your reader. I mean client.
Creating an experience for your client that’s comfortable, easy and straightforward while still giving them valuable results will give your product longevity, and a life span well beyond it getting initial traction.
3. Get yourself a typewriter
Writing the first few pages of your book on your own isn’t that hard. But after a dozen or so pages, you might start to realize that you’re not efficient enough. You could already be thinking of the sequel, so why not get someone else to type while you keep working on the sequel?
In startup words, delegate or automate. Your startup might be your creature, but you’re just one person. You can’t do it all yourself, so it’s important that you find others to take care of the things they’re good at.
After there, there’s automation. There are many paths that you can automate – email marketing, social media marketing, onboarding, retention just to name a few. This gives you granular control of your customer experience and helps you create an ‘ah ha’ moment that’ll keep your customers coming back.
4. Don’t make the storyline go off tangents
If your storyline is about the journey of little Johnny and his struggles growing up, don’t bring Russian architecture into it. Stay on your target and stay relevant.
It’s important that your employees who are in contact with your customers delivery a consistent experience as you designed. Just as important is your marketing team delivering a company and a product that’s consistently branded and has the same message overall marketing channels.
Put the message and your business values in everything you do and remember not to dilute the clear message you’re trying to put out.
5. If the first chapter isn’t good, don’t go through with the story. Change it!
You spend all your time, money and effort into creating this first piece of work, however, after showing it to your friends and clients, they don’t really enjoy it. What do you do?
This is a condensed version of the story, but it still proves a point.
You need to be flexible if your product isn’t the best.
Fail fast and then move on. If something doesn’t work or isn’t getting the results you need, change it. Sometimes it’s great to ‘trust your gut’, but if your marketing campaign or your product is bleeding money, change it.
6. In the end, you are not there to sell one book and one book only
It’s your passion and commitment that’s got you this far and taken you through everything that’s happened so far in your book.
But in the end, you need to grow your readers (users) so that more people consume your story (product). From here on in, it’s all about accelerating growth. When scaling up your marketing campaigns, look at the level of innovation as well as the ROI. Put the time and effort into your marketing strategies, accelerate growth and investment options for better funding to find your newly made product.
In the end, your story will be told by you, but it’ll only be a good story if you put in the smart work.
Use this analogy of writing a book to squeeze the most potential from your business. But remember that the beginning is always the hardest. Don’t compare the success of your startup to the success of the magical unicorns out there. Create your own success with our help! Visit Move Closer’s page and start the conversation. We can not wait to get to know you and your business!