Do you have a marketing strategy?
The prospect of being an entrepreneur has always gotten me excited as far as I can remember. The only part of running a business that nearly scared the pants off me, however, was marketing.
Way back, four to five years ago in my entrepreneur life – just like every other guy – I have always had cool ideas of what my own major break into business stardom would be like. But each time I got an idea and launched it, I found it didn’t take me long to crash land and have to start from scratch.
That period was depressing. I nearly gave up the perfect dream of being an entrepreneur. Thankfully, I persevered. And today, I now know what the root of my failures was: Marketing.
Here are 5 Business Marketing Moves I learned over the years that can help you get your startup great results.
1. – I Figured Out My WHY –
Before you start laying the bricks for your startup, you need a solid foundation. This foundation is built around the “WHY” of your business.
Why are you in business?
What problem are you trying to solve? Is there a market for your product or service offering?
Starting a business can be an extremely hard and arduous. That’s why 90% of startup entrepreneurs fail in their first year. To escape this dreadful list, you must know your why or your purpose in business – these are things that will keep you from the inevitable challenges you will encounter along the way.
In addition, when you know your why, then you know how to go about marketing the idea you want to turn into a business. It’s easy for you to believe the whole world will love your product after all; you eat, sleep and breathe your products.
The reality is that only a small portion of the population will be interested in your product.
Make sure that your startup is solving a real human need and it’s giving people what they really want and not what you think they should want.
Doing this will cut your marketing efforts by half as you will be giving them exactly what they want and customers will be lining up to get a piece of your action.
2. I Started My Own Blog.
What if you had a compelling story to tell about your startup? Blogging can be a great way to market your startup.
Starting a blog in your industry helps to establish you as a thought leader in your niche and further helps to push you in front of customers looking for what you have to offer.
Creating quality content, sharing your personal stories and useful industry knowledge that is helpful to your readers is an excellent way to get the word out about your business and also forge authentic connections with your readers, most of whom will be your prospective customers.
Take things a step further and invest in SEO, or no one will know your business exists. If no one knows your business exists, you won’t have any customers. When you have no customers, there will be no sales and no sales mean no money and no money . . . You get the picture.
3. – I Found a Way to Differentiate My Startup.
The fastest way to fail is to try to be all things to everybody. Today’s customer wants offers and products tailored to their specific needs and delivered in a context they understand.
One way you can differentiate your startup from the competition is to research your target group. Who exactly is your customer and why exactly should they buy from you?
Knowing your target market helps you to tailor your product and service offering to meet their needs and ensure a larger market share for your business.
Also, knowing your competition’s strengths and weaknesses will help you understand how to market your product as better.
Lastly, focus on one or two strengths and the unique qualities of your startup and play it
to your advantage.
4. – I Targeted My Customers Using Social Media.
In this day and age, social media is pretty much everything. If your startup is not on at
least one social media network, then you need to hasten your steps to have one.
The key to getting the most out of this tip is to observe how your target customers behave on social media.
What are they talking about?
Which problem usually comes up in their conversations on social media? What are the issues relevant to your industry on social media? Social media conversations like Twitter, business sites like LinkedIn and Facebook can be a goldmine for potential customers.
Doing it right boils down to defining what your startup needs are. If your startup products are best marketed visually, Instagram and Pinterest would be better social media tools for your startup marketing.
If you offer a service that is best expressed by sharing information, develop a strong Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn presence. If you are targeting a more specific and unique industry content, Reddit would be a better choice.
The key to effective startup marketing using social media is to find the one or two media platforms that are most suited to marketing your product or service offering and using them well.
5. – I Built Relationships With Influencers.
Connecting with influencers allows you to learn the language of your industry quicker, aligning yourself with established brands helps your startup gain credibility.
One effective way of building your influence is to guest blog on their blogs.
This helps to build your reputation online as their popularity and influence will rub off on your business. Having someone influential recommending you on their social media accounts or blogs is also a great way to market your startup and build a successful business relationship at the same time.
But before you can get that honor, and become a successful business owner, you must strive to create a relationship with relevant influencers in your industry. It will help a long way in your marketing strategy and your overall business breakthrough.