CREATING A MARKETING STRATEGY FOR YOUR STARTUP IN 7 EASY STEPS
Joanna Michaels, Director
Creating a marketing strategy for your startup can be challenging, and we understand that. At Beyond Social Buzz we often work with startups and needless to say, we thoroughly enjoy the experience. Startup owners radiate enthusiasm and an unrivalled passion for their products. So early on in their journey, they are entirely driven by 3 things, the passion of possibility, the motivation of opportunity and the challenge of success. Is it any wonder we find their ambition contagious? However, once the initial excitement subsides, the challenge of creating a profitable and sustainable business kicks in. How does my product fit into existing market? How do I turn creativity into cash? We are going to tell you how a well thought out marketing plan can give your start-up a boost-up the ladder of accomplishment
The most successful startups were built on a carefully planned and painstakingly executed strategy. The planning process is often challenging, due to limited human resources, money or talent. It is for this very reason that every marketing activity, no matter how small, needs to be carefully thought through and meticulously executed. However, please don’t feel discouraged, the plan doesn’t need to be complicated. While large companies are likely to create hundreds of pages of strategy, your startup may require no more than a few pages of clearly laid out marketing objectives. So, how do you create a marketing strategy for your startup? Here are some top tips to help you on the road to success.
1. Focus on the first year
Like any new initiative, startups are prone to frequent changes, hence your startup strategy should initially just cover the first year. Later on, you can create a plan that is focused on the medium-term future, two to four years ahead. However, for now concentrate on the first 12 months of your startup existence.
2. Examine your current position – situation analysis
Answer some core questions such as, what defines your business? What are the key benefits of your product or service? How do you differ from what is already out there?
Use of the S.W.O.T model when creating the marketing strategy for your startup, can be very helpful.This exercise encourages you to examine your Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.
3. Define your target audience
It is easy for startup owners to get carried away and believe that simply EVERYONE needs their product. However, the reality is that your startup cannot possibly afford to target everyone. Furthermore, only a small portion of the population will be receptive to your startup offering. In order to successfully compete with larger market players it is crucial that you find your niche. Today we live in a world full of niche and the key to success is to identify a target market and focus your marketing efforts there.
4. Choose your keywords
Defining the key terms that matter for your business is vital for your online visibility and will play a key role when:
– Optimising your web pages for search
– Developing content for your blog posts, videos, podcasts, and articles
– Branding your startup. You will need to develop a clear and concise keyword phrase that sums up your offering. Once created, it will be used repeatedly within your online and offline marketing efforts
– Social Networking – you will need to optimise your social media profiles and regularly update with relevant keywords
5. Decide on your objectives
Set your marketing goals and make sure that they are SMART:
Example: Get 500 new signups a month
Note: When deciding on your key objectives, do not try to measure everything, but focus on the main metrics that matter to your startup.
6. Plan actions
So you’ve identified your audience and your objectives, now it is time to decide on tactics. A good startup marketing plan will cover the tactics required to reach your target prospects at all stages of the buyer’s journey, meaning:
– Awareness Stage (example: Blog, Social Media, Press Releases)
– Consideration (example: Videos, CTAs, Email Marketing)
– Decision (example: Case Studies, Product Comparisons)
7. Set your budget
Decide on how much you can actually spend on marketing your startup. However difficult it is at the beginning, having a marketing budget in place is absolutely essential to the success of your startup. Later on, you will be able to devote a percentage of your gross sales towards your marketing budget. Focus on the most affordable ways of marketing and leave the more costly options until later.
Over to you
That’s all from us. We hope that these tips will make creating a marketing strategy for your startup much easier. If you require help with marketing planning, please do not hesitate to get in touch with Beyond Social Buzz. It will be our pleasure to assist you in your exciting journey.
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