Marketing for Startups is always one of the key points that determines the growth of a Startup. Obviously, when you are a startup you don’t have a lot of cash to burn. Hence you have to be conservative with what you spend your money on. Nitin Mukadam the Mentor / Strategy Advisor to LocalBanya.com had presented most cost effective ways to market yourselves as a startup.
1) Build a Distinctive Identity
Building a Distinctive Identity is nothing but branding. No matter who or what you are, everything can be branded. Hell, if Gary Dahl can become a millionaire in 6 months selling something like Pet Rocks (An idea which he came up with jokingly while drunk!) why can’t you. Always make sure your brand has the one oomph-factor to separate you from the crowd.
2) Invest in Marketing Collateral
Marketing Collateral is nothing but providing your loyal customers means to remind them about you. Be it key chains, calenders or whatever. These things don’t cost much but impact a lot. Also try to make sure the collateral does a little work for you. For example, LocalBanya.com provides refrigerator magnets and sometimes small notepad so that the customers can note down what groceries they need for their next order, and well the magnets just remind them from where to get it. Isn’t it brilliant how small things affect consumer sentiments. And believe me these do work.
3) Focus on Direct Consumer Interaction
Consumers always like it when the boss speaks with them. It helps in bringing in credibility to your Startup. Every Startup or Organization faces with mishaps. However, the way every one handles such situation is what makes you different from others. Reach out to your Consumer directly. Gain Feedback, Act on it. Always try to keep the conversation going. Twitter is one of the best platforms to achieve this.
4) Specialize – Be very good at something
Always be very good at something rather than trying to being good at a lot of things. Most Bloggers, Startups and even Entrepreneurs always state that you should pick a niche. And be the best in that niche. Adjust according to the environment.
5) Seek Win-Win Alliances
Its always healthy to have competition. But sometimes the competition tries to take over by using dirty practices. In such cases, its always best to try and seek Win-Win Alliances. One of the best example of this was demonstrated by Google. When Samsung tried to remove Google’s core suite of apps replacing with theirs, Google bought Motorola and there was a whole lot of stories to follow. In the end, Google showed every one who the boss is, and then when everything was settled they sold Motorola to Lenovo. To read more about this visit this link.Always try to find a loop hole or alliances that will get your competitors out of the picture rather then going on a war with them.
6) Think of Online Strategically
No matter where your business is, in the Information age, if you don’t have a website to present information about your business then your dead meat. Also Invest resources in building a good website. If you have a flash website or a non-responsive website its of no use, you will already be slaughtered in SEO rankings. Don’t ever dare to ignore online presence. Think, Plan and Execute strategically.
7) Generate Loads of Content
There is no substitute to writing/generating loads of content. Even in todays age, Content is the King. Google can only read content. It cannot read images, it cannot read flash, it cannot read code, all Google reads is text. Ask any SEO expert, they only say one thing your content needs to be original and well written.
8) Budgeting: Monetize Fixed Costs
Budgeting is a very important factor in a Startup. They say that an Entrepreneur is jack of all trades. When the tide is high, the entrepreneur needs to do the role of CEO, CFO, Sales, Marketing all by himself. In the starting period of time try and save as much as you can on fixed costs. For Example: If you don’t have more then 10-20 invoices billed in a month, there no point to hire a accountant on a monthly payroll. Just do the billing yourselves and outsource the accounts to a firm for fixed yearly price. That shall do it just fine. We wish you good luck with your venture. And we thank Nikin Mukadam for his amazing insights on the matter.