Do you know what you’re doing when it comes to marketing your startup … or are you jumping on each new trend and just hoping for the best?
Whether you’re a one-person startup on a shoestring budget or whether you’ve got some seed money helping you get underway, your business will stand or fall on the strength of your marketing.
These four rules will put you in a great position to hit your business goals.
Rule #1: Know What You’re Trying to Achieve
There are plenty of different ways to market online, from blogging to social media to YouTube content to paid ads.
Before you dive in, you need to know what exactly you’re aiming to achieve through your marketing. Maybe you want to boost the subscriber numbers for your email list, for instance – which is quite a different goal from simply increasing traffic to your website. The point here is to focus on something particular and avoid setting unrealistic expectations – one of the most common mistakes all startupers make.
Once you have a clear goal in mind, you can target your marketing efforts accordingly.
Tip: Make sure you’re tracking the appropriate metrics to see whether your efforts are paying off. This might mean getting to grips with Google Analytics and setting up specific conversion goals.
Rule #2: Use the Right Tools for the Job
As with any task in life, using the best tools for your marketing efforts will dramatically improve your outcome! From improving your lead generation to helping you nail your website design, selecting the right tools for the job will help your hard work pay off.
Whatever you’re tackling, from the simplest of tasks (like shortening a link) to the most complex (like optimizing your entire website), the right tool will save you time and hassle – and provide a better experience for your prospects and customers.
Tip: While free tools can seem a very attractive option, opting for premium tools for crucial tasks may see you repay your investment many times over in increased sales.
Rule #3: Offer Useful Content
No one wants to read a post or watch a video that’s a thinly disguised advertisement. While you may think your products are amazing, the people you’re reaching out to will need a reason to care.
Whatever type of content you create, whether it’s blog posts, social media posts, videos, or something else, it needs to be useful to your audience. A blog post that offers ten great tips they can use immediately will do better than one that simply tells them about the ten best features of your product.
Tip: Even useful content won’t do well if it’s poorly presented. Make sure your content is well put together: videos should have good sound quality, for instance, and written material should be carefully edited.
Rule #4: Listen to Your Prospects and Customers
Feedback from your customers can be invaluable. For instance, if several of your testimonials mention a worry your customers had before purchasing, then it’s well worth addressing that in your marketing.
It’s particularly important to listen to your customers and prospects on social media. If someone replies to you on Twitter or posts a question on Facebook, make sure you answer it in a timely fashion: other potential customers could have the same question. Even if they don’t, they may well notice how responsive – or not – you are.
Tip: You can take this further and use customer feedback to help you improve your products. Give your customers opportunities to share their feedback and suggestions with you – perhaps via a survey that they automatically receive at a suitable interval after making a purchase.
By following these four rules – setting clear goals, using great tools, creating useful content, and listening to your customers – you’ll be able to make the most of all your marketing efforts.