Marketing Strategies for Early-Stage Startups

By Fernando Berrocal

There are several key aspects of a startup’s growth.  Marketing, however, it’s one of the most crucial areas to pay attention to. Keep in mind that in the early phases of a business, efficiency is essential for its development. Even if you have a tiny budget for promotional activities, you should dedicate those funds in such a way that they have the biggest impact possible.  We'll discuss several marketing strategies for newly launched businesses in this post.

Marketing Strategies

When it comes to marketing initiatives, try to choose alternatives that provide you with quick feedback and results. Direct email advertising, pay-per-click promotion, and gift giveaways are among the most popular options that may bring you in touch with your target market immediately. These types of options are perfect for small businesses; they are convenient and easily implemented. Try to avoid relying solely on slow-acting startup marketing methods as the cornerstone of your marketing strategy, just because they are inexpensive.  There are several major strategies to be aware of; some are appropriate for small businesses, and others are better suited to larger enterprises. 

As previously mentioned, different marketing techniques apply to small businesses than more established businesses. Making the most of limited resources, particularly for something as unpredictable as marketing, is one of the early-stage issues that businesses encounter. Businesses with adequate funding have the means to try a huge variety of marketing strategies in order to determine what works. Startup entrepreneurs don't have this luxury; with this in mind, take time to consider your digital marketing strategy and marketing research.  Focus on implementing some of those techniques to full effect.

Venture Capital

Any marketing channel you choose must specifically have the following 3 features: 

  • Quick
  • Quantifiable
  • Efficient

First, being quick means that your runway is limited–you must get traction right away. Once you have a steady client base, you may begin to consider the long term. Then, it must be quantifiable since startups require flexibility. If you can't detect whether or not your strategies are working, you can't make changes in time to make a difference. Lastly, the marketing channel must be efficient. When you don't have much money - and won’t have it for a significant period of time - it's critical to get the most value. Next, we'll examine some widely-approved startup marketing strategies in order to assess how well they correspond to our definition.

  • Client Outreach: This is the traditional high-effort, low-cost approach for any type of business. For business-to-business (B2B) services, making direct contact with potential clients involves patience but it may be quite profitable. The benefit is that you can immediately tell if this strategy is effective. Are there any responses to the calls and emails? Do they result in eventual sales? If the response is negative, then you may quickly alter your messaging. Today, this type of strategy is easier than ever courtesy of very popular tools nowadays such as Mailchimp and HubSpot, among others. These services allow you to automate the more thoughtless components of these processes You may automate the thoughtless components of the process using these services.

  • Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertisement: Startup founders sometimes have some concerns about this strategy since - in addition to costing money - you never know precisely how much it will cost. However, it satisfies the demand for speed and is significantly superior to a free option. You immediately put your website in front of potential buyers when you start a PPC campaign–and can determine the amount of return on your PPC expenditure if your landing page tracks conversions. Do your advertisements generate a profit? How many times? You can cancel immediately if you see that you're losing money. You may rapidly set your bid limit, or abandon the entire endeavor and attempt a different strategy.

Marketing Strategis for Early-Stage Startups

  • Prizes and Gifts: These types of compensations are fantastic for e-commerce and Business-to-Client (B2C) businesses. You may easily build a sizable list of self-selected subscribers by providing something. Don't merely provide cash; instead, consider something that will particularly appeal to your target consumers. Be imaginative when choosing the reward. Consider awards for almost-winners, as well, or they will become frustrated. These are fantastic chances to provide product discounts or free trials of your services. Speed is, once more, the most crucial element. Either you're developing a lot of engagement rapidly, or you're finding out right away that your strategy has to adjust.

  • Content Marketing: This strategy mainly involves Search Engine Optimization (SEO), but it may also entail creating content to become viral among your target market–or attract the attention of industry media. Although content marketing tactics are preferable for startups - since they may affect your business immediately - their success can still be hit-or-miss. Even top-tier content marketers do a ton of work that is ignored. If you’re just getting started, it might take a while to determine what sorts of articles would resonate with your readers. The best places for content marketing are relatively specialized markets where you have a wealth of contacts. The more voices there are, the more difficult it becomes to be heard. Keep in mind that having content on your website is always a smart idea.  It's an efficient approach to increasing interaction and trust. Simply said, unless your specialty is pretty small (and you are an expert in it),  don't base your marketing plan around this.

Another relevant note regarding SEO–it is evident how valuable this type of content marketing is.  Naturally, you want your page to appear in the top Google results. However, as an entrepreneur, it is not where you need to focus your efforts.  The majority of SEO firms claim that you'll start to see results in up to six months. However, results don't always indicate that you're in the top ten. For your website to begin appearing towards the top of the list for your keywords, it may take approximately a year. Additionally, the procedure greatly benefits websites with a solid track record and a consistent timetable for releasing new content.  This may not be feasible for your organization in its early stages.

In conclusion, there are different marketing strategies that founders should keep in mind for fledgling startups. Remember: virtually all the tools that will allow you to realize these strategies can be found online–you can access many of them for free, or for a modest fee.  Don’t forget to take time to contemplate all the resources available to you; marketing strategies should not be rushed!

At MassLight, we have top-tier marketing resources that can help your startup launch.  Our Build-for-Equity program is perfect for early-stage teams.  The program involves different stages varied in equity and valuation; “Idea Stage” (with 3% of equity and up to 3M in valuations), “Discovery Stage” (with 6% of equity and up to 5M in valuation), and “Build Stage” (with 20% of equity and up to 15M in valuation). If you need more specific information related to these specific programs, come to this link. MassLight specializes in helping founders launch and scale their startup, then connecting them with investors and acquirers. 

Ready to bring your startup to the next level? Apply to MassLight’s next batch. MassLight supplies capital and a dedicated tech team. We take equity in return. Have questions? Refer to our FAQ page.

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