There’s nothing more exciting and challenging than starting your own business. However, the thrill of getting your idea out there and possibly earning from it is leveled out by the pressure of ensuring it doesn’t fail. After all, there are thousands of other already-established businesses, and new ones trying to enter the game daily.
As a new entrepreneur, one way to guarantee that your business does not fail is to see to it that you have people willing to purchase your products and services, and that’s where marketing comes in. Marketing is essential for all businesses, but more so for startups.
According to a recent poll, founders of failed startups admitted that poor marketing was a top reason for their startup’s failure. Some startups even have a disadvantage, as marketing usually takes a backseat when it comes to limited budgeting capital. However, with the existence of the digital space, there’s no reason not to be able to reach your customers since digital offers an affordable, quick and targeted way to market products. All your marketing campaign needs to succeed are the right strategies. Here are some types of marketing strategies that startups use.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Websites are a must for every business, and sites cannot afford not to use search engine optimization. With so many websites in a given niche, just building one isn’t going to cut it; you have to get word about your site out and let search engines be able to find you.
Majority of small business owners believe that a search engine optimized website can bring more traffic and revenue to their businesses. Showing up organically on the search engine pages is undoubtedly one of the cheapest ways to market and bring in traffic to your site. It also builds trust. If customers see that your website ranks high in the search results, it leaves a positive impression on potential customers that you are a reputable company.
SEO is especially important if you have an e-commerce site. Aim to rank for keywords that are relevant to your site, since keyword stuffing can be penalized.
SEO involves many aspects–content, on- and off-page optimization, site architecture, and so forth. If you don’t know where to start, a reputable SEO company can help you.
Content marketing is a must for both B2B and B2C businesses. Creating relevant content not only contributes to your SEO efforts but increases brand visibility, boosts brand awareness, builds credibility and authority, supports your social media efforts and positions you as a thought leader.
With an effective content marketing strategy, you can identify the correct modes of content creation at each stage of the buyer’s journey, which leads to higher conversion. A report found that businesses with blogs generate 126% more leads than their competitors without one.
A caveat? Remember that content marketing seldom offers quick results. As with SEO, it takes time before you start noticing effects, but the impact is long-lasting.
Although there have been predictions on the death/decline of email marketing, businesses must continue to leverage this powerful marketing strategy. Email marketing is known to have the most significant ROI. Brands earn an average of $44 for every $1 spent on email marketing.
You can start collecting emails by asking website visitors to sign up for your newsletter or ask people for their email addresses in exchange for valuable lead magnets (guides, and case studies for example).
It’s not hard to succeed in email marketing, as long as you have a catchy, engaging subject line that will make the reader want to open the email and excellent email copy which includes a compelling call-to-action. It will also be pertinent to optimize for mobile and take a personalized approach to your emails by sending them to the specific customer segments they are apt for.
Remember not to keep sending your list adverts; it’s best to mix it up with informative and entertaining content.
Social Media Marketing
Social media has become a powerful marketing tool these days. With over 2 billion people in the world with an active social media account, social media is definitely where the people are.
According to a Social Media Examiner’s report, 89% of marketers indicated that their social media initiatives had generated increased exposure for their companies. Buffer supports this statistic, saying social media is the number 1 marketing strategy used by startups.
Benefits of social media marketing include increased exposure, lead generation, and customer engagement, which eventually leads to customer loyalty. Marketers that use social media also benefit from the targeting options it offers, so that campaigns reach the customers most likely to convert.
Although many people have found success in social media marketing, there are several more who have failed, and that is because these are the people that think that having a social media account is enough. However, social media has evolved throughout the years, and marketers must quickly keep up and aim to stay ahead of the pack.
How does one succeed in social media marketing? First, it is essential to create a social strategy, which involves creating a customer persona, targeting that customer persona, and determining what types of posts to publish, as well as the frequency of publishing. Second, it’s essential to choose the right social media channel. Choose the one where your customers are.
The beauty of social media marketing is that you can opt to do it in-house or outsource the functions to a reputable digital marketing agency.
Influencer marketing is quickly catching on as a marketing strategy. 84% of marketers have said that they’re expecting to work with influencers in the next 12 months, and 94% have reported that they found influencer marketing effective, as it can generate up to 11 times more ROI than traditional marketing methods and costs less to implement. There’s no reason why startups shouldn’t adopt it.
If your startup targets younger consumers, especially millennials and Gen Z, you will significantly benefit from influencer marketing as these groups have become immune to more traditional marketing channels. Other than that, you will enjoy higher engagement because younger consumers believe in the authenticity of influencers. This authenticity will also help grow your brand by building trust and word-of-mouth.