If you are starting a company, you’ve definitely faced the paradox of “my idea is genius and everybody needs it; how do I let the world know?” You tell the world about your product or service they so greatly need through the incredible and far-reaching world of marketing.
Your startup needs marketing
No matter what kind of business you are starting, you need marketing to help you fulfill your company’s full potential! Marketing establishes a reliable line of communication between brand and consumer.
It is the way you will connect with potential buyers, get the word out about your product or service and continue to inform your audience of updates.
To get the most out of marketing, you need to develop and follow a strategy.
A strategy changes everything about how you market
Crafting a marketing strategy ensures that no tactics you implement are random or without positive effect. In fact, it helps make certain that every effort you put forth helps you grow as a company and gain consumers who consistently purchase your products.
Developing your strategy is the first step in marketing. Throughout the process, you’ll refine your business objectives, gain a clear understanding of your target audience, and anchor a clear set of goal trackers.
Getting started might sound daunting, so we’ve set out a list of steps to follow. Each step comes with research, insight, and planning of its own. Take your time as you strategize; when you are ready to execute, you’ll be in a perfect position to confidently enter the market.
How to Create a Marketing Strategy
Creating a marketing strategy requires research, steady diligence, and a commitment to implementation and progression.
Follow these guideline steps for the best results:
- Identify the target market
- Perform thorough research
- Run competitive analysis
- Determine a feasible budget
- Choose marketing channels
- Create an email list
- Brainstorm content creation
- Gather influencers
- Establish a measuring system
How to Do Market Research for a Startup
In this section, we will look at the first three strategy creation bullets:
- Identify the target market
- Perform thorough research
- Run competitive analysis
Identifying the target market
Before you can start marketing, you must know whom you are marketing to. Here’s how to find out:
- Segment target audiences to clearly identify potential consumer groups and learn about their respective differences
- Account for generational differences (and similarities) within target groups; even though consumers are the same age, they have varying interests within their generation bracket for which type of content to digest and when
- Narrow in on the consumer groups most likely to need and buy your product, but leave space for unexpected audiences who gravitate toward your brand; e.g. don’t say no to paying Gen X consumers because you want to be a popular Millennial brand
Perform thorough market research
Research is your greatest guide to pleasing your target audience:
- Accurately identify need for product/service
- Utilize interviews, focus groups, product trials and requests for feedback
- Determine product differentiation
Run competitive analysis
Check out what your competitors are up to so you can up your game or avoid similar mistakes:
- Run SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) analysis
- Collect and analyze competitor strategies, audiences and flaws
Now that research is taken care of, we can look at the remaining strategy steps.
Determining your budget
Marketing is a big investment, whether through time or money. Seriously evaluate where you can afford to spend and where you can apply your own time to achieve desired results:
- Be realistic with budget as a startup; it’s okay to start small
- Look where you can get most for your money based on skills, consumer interests, and predicted ROI
- Budget according to your business objectives
Choosing marketing channels
Each consumer group tunes into different marketing channels, so you’ll need to determine which to focus on for sharing your message:
- Let consumer research guide you
- Create cohesive and linked social profiles
- Research the respective tone/purpose of your chosen platforms
- Leave room for profile expansion, but keep current efforts focused on the most necessary channels
Creating your email list
Emails speak to consumers over time as they offer a routine check-in and point of brand exposure.
- Start slow, your list will build through consistent effort
- Practice patience as you collect addresses
- Offer an incentive to receive more email sign-ups
Keeping content inspired is essential to consumers bothering to tune in to what you share. Keep the brainstorming routine and generate as many ideas as possible before beginning creation. This will narrow down ideas and give you plenty of backup material for creative droughts.
- Let research guide you
- Consider team resources and skills
- Research market
- Understand the effect of content on your consumers’ behavior
- Determine market position
- Refine voice and message
- Analyze competitor content
- Diversify types of content
- Build slowly, don’t rush to publish all at once
- Create a posting timeline or sign up for automated service
- Stay creative! It’s okay to run trial and error
Gathering the right influencers
Influencers help communicate your message and brand in the native tongue of consumers; as you onboard influencers, do the following:
- Research who consumers follow and trust
- Reach out to macro- and micro-influencers
- Keep influencers relevant to both brand and audience
- Build genuine connections to establish long-term relationships
Establishing a measuring system
A measure system will be critical in evaluating your marketing efforts:
- Match strategy goals to business goals
- Determine the ideal ROI per tactic
- Observe conversion rates against a predicted or desired benchmark
- Consistently collect Email data points
- Use Google Analytics
3 Tips for Implementing your Strategy
Diligently track progress
If you properly strategized, you devised a tracking system. Now, you must implement that tracker diligently. Market trends change when consumer interests change, and you can often observe these shifts in audience response before research notifies you of any general market transitions. Set up a weekly, monthly, or quarterly review routine.
Be ready to adapt
When you notice parts of your strategy not working or not meeting goals, re-strategize this section and implement the new plan. You are bound to run into efforts that don’t gel with consumers as well as you’d hoped. That’s okay! The important thing is to observe it and then to adapt.
How can you get consumers to share your video if asking them to share didn’t work? Maybe they’d rather share a photo; maybe you can incentivize them with a discount or donation to a cause.
Keep working steadily toward goals
Whether you have instant success or it’s a slow progression, remain consistent in your efforts. This is one way to establish trust with consumers — trust is an essential ingredient when it comes to a buyer’s purchasing decision.
Affordable Effective Marketing Strategies
Advertising and marketing are inevitably big investments you’ll need to make at the start of your company’s growth. The investment will be either financial or time-based. If you’re short on cash flow or you want to preserve your initial capital, there are a variety of low-budget (though time demanding) marketing avenues you can explore.
Experimenting with these low-budget strategic tactics is a wise choice as you will gain a deeper understanding of digital marketing and how the tactics you implement affect your product, brand, and business.
Try these digital marketing approaches to boost your strategy on a shoestring budget:
- Upload more videos
- Publish infographics, they’re easy to share
- Focus on high-quality content over more content (quality over quantity)
- Stay consistent on social media
- Keep emailing; it generates return
- Repurpose old content
- Offer incentives and contests
- Use referral programs
- Invite guest bloggers
- Go live on social media
Rosy Strategies can help you build the marketing strategy that your startup needs in order to thrive. Trust our digital marketing experts to put you on a path toward achieving your business goals through tangible, executable marketing tactics.
Reach out to our team to learn more and get started with your startup marketing strategy, today.