Build­ing a busi­ness is a huge moun­tain to pre­pare to climb, but the reward at the top is worth every stride on the trail. One facet of busi­ness devel­op­ment you’ll need to con­sid­er is your mar­ket­ing strat­e­gy and how much to spend on your mar­ket­ing efforts. The typ­i­cal mar­ket­ing bud­get for a start­up varies, but you can count on it being a sig­nif­i­cant invest­ment. Com­mit to invest­ing in this branch of your busi­ness; it is the strongest (if not the only) way to get your busi­ness off the ground and run­ning.

Let’s take a deeper look at plotting your marketing budget and how much to invest in each element.

How much should a startup spend on marketing?


Star­tups and small busi­ness should plan to spend about 7% to 8% of their gross rev­enue on mar­ket­ing and adver­tis­ing. If prof­it is falling below $5 mil­lion annu­al­ly, the U.S. Small busi­ness Admin­is­tra­tion sug­gests bump­ing mar­ket­ing spend up to 10% to 12% of gross rev­enue. It’s safe to aim for a mid­dle num­ber and adjust your bud­get as you watch sales and growth pro­jec­tions man­i­fest and soar or fall short of expec­ta­tions.

Is marketing spend the same in every industry?

The mar­ket­ing bud­get per­cent­age by indus­try might shift. Depend­ing on mar­ket sat­u­ra­tion, you might need to spend more or less than the sug­ges­tion to boost your brand’s preva­lence amongst com­peti­tors. Before devel­op­ing your mar­ket­ing strat­e­gy and spend, run a thor­ough com­pet­i­tive analy­sis that allows you to gauge how much work you have ahead. Keep an eye peeled for win­dows of oppor­tu­ni­ty to con­nect with and win niche audi­ences as your loy­al con­sumer base.



Where should I spend the most?

Where you invest your mar­ket­ing dol­lars is just as impor­tant as how many of them you invest. First, check off the basics:

  • Web­site
  • SEO
  • Social media
  • PPC ads

Once your mar­ket­ing bud­get has cov­ered the foun­da­tion of your online pres­ence, hone in on your dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing strat­e­gy. In today’s tech­no­log­i­cal­ly infused world, the inter­net is the most obvi­ous place to find a busi­ness. Every year, few­er dol­lars are spent on tra­di­tion­al adver­tis­ing modes (though some still serve as valu­able com­ple­ments to dig­i­tal assets), and more dol­lars are invest­ed in dig­i­tal modes of com­mu­ni­ca­tion.

How much budget should I dedicate to digital marketing?

Small busi­ness­es should plan to spend 3% of total rev­enue on dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing. If you are fol­low­ing the SBA’s sug­ges­tion of 7%-8% total mar­ket­ing spend, that’s almost half of your bud­get. Dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing is impor­tant, expen­sive and worth every pen­ny.

What’s the most important digital marketing asset to invest in?

Make sure to invest in mobile. In 2018, mobile is more impor­tant than ever, so por­tion off a gen­er­ous bit of your mar­ket­ing bud­get to opti­miz­ing your web­site for mobile users, devel­op­ing apps, set­ting up push noti­fi­ca­tions and find­ing clever ways to con­nect with con­sumers in the palms of their hands.

If you are a small busi­ness or start­up, work­ing with a pro­fes­sion­al dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing agency is one of the best invest­ments you can make to cat­a­pult your com­pa­ny toward suc­cess. To learn more about the aver­age mar­ket­ing cost for small busi­ness endeav­ors, the resources avail­able to you and the tools nec­es­sary to jump-start your brand vision, get in touch with our savvy squad at Rosy Strate­gies.

We will walk through every step of the marketing process with you, helping build your legacy and educating you on best marketing practices along the way.