Author: Tim Lampe || Source: Startup Valley.news || Date: May 06th, 2021
Startup founding made easy: Here’s how to do strong B2C marketing on a shoestring budget.
“Our product is so rad, it sells on word of mouth alone.” How often have I heard this sentence. And how often have I contradicted it: To grow properly, even a strong product needs equally strong marketing but marketing doesn’t have to be expensive – which is certainly good news for founders with a tight budget.
I know, especially in the beginning, founding teams have a lot on their plate. Many would like to avoid having to deal with such a complex (and for most probably also foreign) topic as marketing. Nevertheless, it is necessary to deal with the appropriate marketing structure early on if you want to be successful. Especially in the online and social media space, there are numerous opportunities to achieve maximum advertising impact with minimal financial investment. You can build the foundation for this with validation.
Being well-prepared is half the battle
Before you start, clarify exactly who your target market is. You should be able to do this even without in-depth marketing knowledge. After all, you know the strengths of your product or service better than anyone else. Then you need to decide which channels you can use to reach your target group as directly as possible. This will reduce wastage in your campaign, saving you money and effort. Remember that during the market validation you have already dealt with questions about target groups, channels, etc. very intensively. If you put in the effort then, you can now “reap the harvest” of this hard work.
Your marketing strategy must suit you
Then let’s get started: I assume that you already have a meaningful website with a logo and a suitable slogan. The most important rule: be authentic. The strategy must fit you. This creates trust. Your customers will notice and appreciate that. The first channel you can use for your marketing at low cost is of course the Internet. Nowadays, online marketing is a major marketing opportunity. It is best if your content goes viral, i.e. spreads on its own. Free trial offers, coupons and digital sweepstakes, viral multimedia or (pre-launch) newsletters are just a few examples. You can also ask your customers (or your testers and winners) to share their experiences. This way you can collect valuable testimonials. Collaborating with influencers is also effective. Don’t worry, they don’t have to be big names. Several micro-influencers often achieve the same effect.
How to increase your visibility
Influencers bring us to another area that allows for cost-effective marketing – social networks. Use as many channels as possible without getting bogged down. Via Instagram, Linkedin, Twitter and so on you can increase your online contacts and generate attention with well-made (!) content. But beware: Even if it looks easy, creating good content is time-consuming. Don’t get bogged down in the “I-can-do-it-myself” mode, but rather engage talent or get a freelancer on board.
Community contests or a community survey, for example, are effective ways to generate traffic. At the same time, you can learn more about your potential customers. You may even be able to offer them a free prototype if they share your product on their social media channels. A positive side effect for you here is the opportunity for important validation: use the information you receive to work on yourself, your offer and your marketing strategy.
In general, the following applies: Increase your visibility – analog and digital. Network, benefit from the traction of others. Why not be a guest speaker at an event or take part in a startup competition! Often, it also makes sense to use traditional advertising methods: Billboard, car advertising, business directory, participation in a trade fair …
Hopefully you can see that marketing for startups is a very wide field with several possibilities. Above all, one thing is important: become active! Draw attention to yourself, arouse interest and create trust. Every day counts to establish your company in the market. With the right marketing mix, your revenue will increase and so will your budget for even more marketing – a welcome upward spiral.
Tim Lampe leads the Operations team at Campus Founders and works with his team to develop the offerings and teaching formats that holistically guide startup teams on their entrepreneurial journey. Prior to Campus Founders, he has been involved in several startups in consulting, SaaS, education and co-living and also spent a year in Silicon Valley.
Statements made by the author and the interview partner do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial team and the publisher