Wondering how to turn your billion-dollar idea into a reality?
Ideas that spread win!
Being an entrepreneur is full of risks. You need to swallow two bitter pills so that you don’t regret later.
- For any startup, a remarkable idea is not sufficient to succeed on its own.
- No matter how advanced marketing strategies you employ, If your product is not worth it, it will never succeed.
The truth can be harsh, and I hope that you believe in your idea, and you have covered all the necessary steps for the foundation of your startup.
Now that we are on the same page, you must be ready with your fantastic idea. This article will act as a step by step guide to marketing for a startup.
Why is Digital Marketing Essential for Startups?
A startup is your brainchild. Raising a toddler requires your full attention. Just like that, scaling your startup requires continuous effort. That’s what makes it so challenging and full of ups-and-downs.
Here’s how good marketing helps to nurture your startup-
1) Creates Brand Awareness
For a startup to succeed, creating awareness about the brand and the product is the utmost priority. This is because unlike established businesses, the possibility of word-of-mouth marketing is quite low.
According to Forbes, a brand that is available across all the platforms consistently is likely to reap increased revenue by up to 23%.
Thus, digital marketing proves to be the Holy Grail to create awareness for your startup. Startups solve problems through innovation and innovation needs marketing. If your audience does not know your product exists, how can they be interested?
2) Stand Apart from Competitors
When you work with a startup, just creating brand awareness is not enough. Especially if you have a lot of competition within your niche.
You need to convey to your consumers the following-
- What is the idea behind your startup?
- What is the one thing that makes you stand apart from your competitors?
- Why should the customers choose you over other brands within the same niche?
Highlighting the following is a must to get a firm grip over the market-
- The problems your startup aims to solve.
- The mission and vision for your startup.
- The causes you work for.
- The contribution of your brand to the society.
It has been shown that 13% of the consumers are likely to pay 31-50% more for your product if they feel it has a positive impact on society.
3) Less Cost -- More Creativity
Digital Marketing is way cheaper than traditional advertising. In the latter, one had to use newspapers, hoardings, and magazines for advertisements which turned out to be rather costly.
A separate marketing budget is no less than a luxury for budding startups. Social media marketing provides entrepreneurs with the perfect platform at no or nominal cost.
There is an infinite scope of creative marketing campaigns through digital marketing. Digital marketing has come a long way from just pay-per-click advertising to value-based marketing techniques.
Following are some of the best ways to market online-
- Social Media Campaigns
- Minimalistic Posters
- LIVE shows
- Customer Reviews and Testimonials
4) Engage with Customers
In traditional advertisements, conducting effective surveys and market research was a horrendous task. Digital marketing provides the advantage to acquire customers with more ways to engage.
Digital Marketing through social media helps in improving customer experience. The following engagement tactics would help you with a better grasp of consumers and their demands-
- Online Help Desks
- LIVE sessions
In a study conducted by MarketingWeek, it was found that B2B startups perform better with consumers when they use emotional marketing messages as compared to rational marketing messages.
5) Build Brand Loyalty
According to a survey conducted by Invesp, it was noted that 59% of shoppers choose to buy products from the brands they already trust.
This is what makes it difficult for startups in their early stages to penetrate the market. Hence building brand loyalty with customers should be one of the primary objectives for the startups.
Social Media provides excellent opportunities to hook customers by sharing ideas and stories behind the product. They have a tendency to go viral with their best marketing strategies.
Startups like ‘Step Set Go’ intending to promote a healthy lifestyle. Their strategy to provide rewards for walking went viral. It made ‘Step Set Go’ one of the most popular startups in India.
6) Analyze Consumer Behaviour using Metrics
Digital Marketing provides you with a revolutionary tool that traditional advertising campaigns don’t. That is, the ability to monitor your progress through detailed Insights and Statistics and that too in real-time.
Through digital marketing, It becomes extremely efficient to track your growth, Leads & Conversions generated through your strategies. It can be used to optimize your skills in providing an even better customer experience.
You can further classify your strategies to focus on different segments of customers. You can do this depending on their demographics, age groups, and locations. It is also possible to match the needs of the customers according to the demand.
Looking to build an effective launch pad for your business ?, here are
7) Maximize Conversions
Looking to build an effective launchpad for your business? here are 13 tips to build a landing page that converts
Digital Marketing can be an excellent platform to maximize leads and conversions for your startup. Most startups underestimate the potential of social media and thus fail to generate revenues.
Following are the essential elements to maximize conversions for your startup-
- Add links to your website whenever and wherever feasible.
- Add a Call-to-Action button at the end of the articles or blogs you create.
- Provide alternatives to subscribe or sign up to your website.
Not focusing on marketing is like digging the grave for your own startup.
CB Insights analyzed the reasons for the failure of 101 startups. They found that Poor Marketing was the primary reason for the failure of 14% of startups. It was also a secondary basis for failure of the rest of the many startups.
Hence, if you are struggling with your startup, poor marketing might be one of the significant reasons. Nevertheless, let me help you out with the most effective marketing strategies.
Here’s the step by step guide for digital marketing for startups-
The Groundwork for Startup Marketing
Just like a great building cannot sustain on a weak foundation, the marketing for your startup requires substantial Groundwork. Here are some marketing strategies for startups to ensure a strong foundation-
1) Identify Your Niche Market
You can only use a considerable amount of budget at the early stages.
Thus, while marketing for your startup, you need to figure out what demographic of consumers you serve.
It is because this would help you target your potential customers. Now, if your startup is already established, you must know all about your niche market and the consumers who will benefit with your product.
But If you are still a rookie, here’s how you can identify your niche-
- Identify the problems-- By identifying the problems you solve, you will be able to determine the customers who may benefit from your startup.
- Estimate Market Size-- Estimating the number of your potential customers will wonk wonders to your market research.
- Consider Market Saturation-- Examine whether your startup has competitors. This is the best time to stalk your competitors and decide if your startup can succeed.
- Determine Profitability-- Make sure your revenue model works with the data you collected.Ensure that your startup is capable of making big bucks.
Once you are confident about these four aspects of your niche, you are good to go.
2) Scope of ‘Otaku’
Otaku-- Otaku is a Japanese Term, which is related to people’s obsession with consuming new products or services. Otaku means experiencing something that you have never experienced before.
The concept of Otaku was introduced by Seth Godin. He also is called the Ultimate Entrepreneur for the Information Age. This concept applies only to the startups that bring something new to the market.
For such products
- There is no competition. As a result, comparing business models is not feasible.
- Identification of a clear-cut niche is also tough.
- This makes it difficult to ascertain the answer to the question, who to market?
According to the concept of Otaku, new products should be marketed to early adopters and Innovators. Using Otaku, the products or services to spread through word-of-mouth harmlessly maintaining the success of the startup.
Let us consider the case of a startup called Eterneva. Eterneva was an idea to turn loved ones into gems after their death. This bizarre idea owes its success to the early adopters.
The startup even ended up getting $600,000 investment from Mark Cuban.
3) Setting up a budget
The one thing that makes your marketing stand out is the consistency over all the channels.At the end, it all boils down to monetary investment. For making the most out of your startup, you need to manage your capital.
57% of the startups do not even set up their budget based on ROI analyses. So you have a good chance to overtake them by carefully planning your budget.
You need to optimize your budget for paid channels such as Facebook and Google advertising. At the same time, you must allocate enough capital for other platforms.
If you need a detailed guide, you can check out my article on How to Budget for Digital Marketing.
4) Product-Market Fit
Marc Andreesen (An American Investor and Entrepreneur) coined the term Product-Market fit. In simple terms, PMF means the degree to which a product may satisfy the needs of the market.
Product-Market Fit is a point from which a startup enters the fast-growth phase. Achieving PMF, the company has the potential to produce exactly what consumers demand in the market.
How to know if your startup has the potential of being Product Market Fit?
- When customers appreciate the value of the product.
- When you achieve a remarkable number of Sales.
- When you can witness repeat sales.
- When you witness word-of-mouth marketing.
- When anything you post in the media tends to go viral.
A Product-Market Fit in the present scenario of COVID-19 can be for the N-95 respirator masks. Following is the easiest way to test your product for the Product-Market Fit-
- Fix your Target Audience- Highlight your High Expectation Customer (HXC) through market research,
- Figure Out your Value Proposition-- Consider what makes your product stand out from your competitors.
- Define Minimum Viable Product (MVP)-- List all the primary features of your product that make it valuable. Further, you need to develop and test the prototype.
Marketing through Paid Channels
With the Product-Market Fit, you have laid a strong foundation for marketing your startup. Next, you need to focus on Marketing through Paid Channels.
1) Google AdWords
Startups can earn up to $3 for every $1.6 spent on Google AdWords. This is an excellent margin for a budding startup.
What can be better to promote your product than the most significant search engine in the world? Google AdWords allows you precision in targeting customers. It also provides you the ability to track your performance and payment only for results.
You can set up your Google Ads in the following steps-
- Sign up for Google AdWords using the Google AdWords website.
- Considering your estimated number of visitors and Cost Per Acquisition (CPA), hence set your budget.
- Using the advanced search option, select your target audience according to the target demographic and location.
- You need to choose if you want your Ads to appear on the Google SERPs or you want them to be displayed on related websites.
- Next, you need to choose keywords, select your bid, and create the Ad you desire.
You may contact my agency if you need help with marketing your startup.
Following are some of the other examples of a startup marketing agency-
- Blue Fountain Media
2) Social Media Marketing
According to a survey conducted by Mayple consisting of 1000 startups,
- 70% startups use Facebook Marketing
- 49% startups use Instagram Marketing and;
- 47% startups use Twitter Advertising consistently.
Hence you can imagine how significant is the role of social media marketing for tech startups. If you have competitors, you will notice all of them being active on all social media platforms.
Following are the social media platforms that you must utilize-
Even if you consistently promote your brand over any five of these, your startup is sure to create a buzz.
Following are the advantages of promoting your startup through social media-
- Promoted Posts on Facebook and Instagram are the best ways to increase your engagement rate. It further results in boosting your Click Through Rates (CTR) through the links provided.
- Social Media allows you to test unlimited permutations and advert variations as possible.
- The more creative and out-of-the-box campaigns you create, the more is your chance of being successful and creating conversions.
- You can use Insights and Conversion Trackers to track your progress.
- You can also leverage segmentation techniques, through which you can target a particular segment of your audience with specific ads.
To gain more insights on social media marketing, check out my article to Become an Instagram Marketing Expert in 2020.
Remarketing- Remarketing is a part of Google Ads. Using Remarketing,the visitors of your website will be able to see your Ads on other platforms (such as using a browser or watching YouTube videos).
Remarketing works on the customer unconsciously, bringing them back to your website and encouraging them to try your products. Remarketing has the potential to grow your conversion rates and ROI.
Why should you consider using Remarketing?
- Using Remarketing is a fantastic way to connect with your audience even when they aren’t visiting your website.
- Remarketing builds brand awareness and brand loyalty, and brand awareness.
- Remarketing directly affects your CTR.
- Remarketing Ad Fatigue is much lower as compared to other display Ads.
- Remarketing is cost-effective.
4) Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate Marketing is a process using which you can promote your products in return for a commission for every unit sold. Affiliate Marketing should be used at later stages of your startup, after obtaining a Product-Market Fit.
This is because if your product has sufficient margin and good leads, managing a small commission for marketing would not affect your profits. Here are the reasons why affiliate marketing is essential for your startup-
- Affiliate Marketing helps in creating brand awareness.
- Affiliates often create User Generated Content (UGC) to promote your brand.
- Affiliates improve your Conversion and ROI.
- Affiliate Marketing is more effective for established startups and helps to scale up your business.
To know more about affiliate marketing in India, check out my article on The anatomy of affiliate networks in India.
5) Influencer Marketing
Influencer Marketing includes finding macro or micro-influencers within your niche. These influencers can promote your product with their audience that they gain on platforms such as Instagram and Twitter.
The reason why Influencer Marketing is so efficient is that it hardly represents an advertisement and thus reduces the fatigue associated. It can be one of the best marketing strategies for startup.
Example of Influencer Marketing Campaign by Cure.Fit
Cure Fit is one of the most popular Indian startups that have used Influencer Marketing to their advantage.
Hook your Consumers using Content Marketing
After Paid Marketing Techniques, here are some ways to hook your customers using content marketing.
1) Try email Marketing
There was a time when Marketing through Email was nothing but developing a mailing list. The list consisted of hundreds of Emails through which companies used to send boring news and updates.
If you do the same today, you might soon end up marked as Spam. Today, Email Marketing is all about personalized promotion. Here’s what you need to do-
- Maintain a list of Emails for all your customers and potential customers who visit your website (using the sign-up button as a CTA).
- Create compelling and personalized Emails with a creative and catchy content. You can use templates or even some services available online.
- Sprinkle the links to your products at the end of the mail.
- Experiment with different content and time of mails until you optimize your traffic.
Email Marketing should not be overused due to its nature of high fatigue. It has the tendency to annoy your customers.
In India, businesses like Swiggy and Myntra are the best examples of Email Marketing.
Are you looking for a good email marketing software ?Here are 13 must have email marketing softwares for growing your revenue
2) Write compelling blogs
Marketing is all about creating value by connecting through your customers. What better way to communicate than moving your audience with your success story?
Most of the startups fail to focus on content marketing. Hence they never create strong bonds with their consumers. The sole purpose of marketing through blogs is to build brand loyalty and drive traffic.
Here is how to write compelling blogs that demand attention-
- Start with the story of your journey, your ups and downs and the factors that kept you going.
- Do not just focus on your products; nobody needs a user manual. Focus on the impact created by them.
- Elaborate the idea behind creating your product and how it creates an impact on society.
- Add Call To Action Buttons (CTA) at the end of each article.
- Encourage your customers to share what they want to read.
- You can also include user testimonials and reviews to gain consumer’s trust.
- Track the performance of each article and thus determine what works for you.
Here is an excellent example of blogs
3) Create Youtube videos
YouTube is the second most used Search Engine in the world, and you can utilize this opportunity to your advantage. Even if you are unable to afford YouTube Advertisements, there’s always the option to create your own channel.
Although creating a YouTube channel sounds like too much, having your own channel can help build brand awareness with your consumers.You can also drive significant traffic to your website through YouTube.
Check out my article on How to do YouTube views Hacking the Right Way to learn in detail.
4) Reach Out to Established Publications
It is one of the best times to own a startup. Established Publications are ready to dedicate some space under their precious columns for budding startups.
Even participating in Entrepreneurship Summits, Business Conclaves or Co-Sponsoring college-level events are some innovative ways to promote your product.
Customer Feedback Loop
Just measuring your revenues and profit is not enough for your startup to succeed. You need to take feedback from your consumers. You can do this in the following steps-
- Survey- Simply ask your customers if they are satisfied with the product, you can do this by surveys or polls or feedback forms.
- Sort and Collect- Collect all the data and sort according to your desire.
- Analyze- Analyze the problems faced by your customers and develop solutions.
- Implement- Bring out newer versions of your product with the solutions incorporated.
- Notify- Notify your customers that the feedback has been used in the following manner and urge them to try the new product.
Things to Remember
- Digital Marketing for your startup is like water to your sapling. The more you add to it, the more your startup grows.
- Laying Groundwork is extremely necessary for your startup.
- Define a clear-cut niche, identify if there’s the scope of Otaku, Set up a Budget, and estimate the Product-Market Fit.
- Get the most out of the Paid channels considering your budget. Analyze and optimize your marketing campaigns.
- Hook your customers by creating valuable content.
- Optimize your Conversions and do not forget to take feedback from your customers.
I hope this article proves to be the stepping stone towards success for your startup. It is a long journey, but well begun is half done!
Feel free to ask me any queries, let me know how these strategies worked for you by commenting down below. And Keep up the Hustle!
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