The number of startups that get launched every month worldwide is a staggering one. Because of this and because of the already extant competition in the form of big, established companies, it can be difficult for a startup to distinguish itself among the competition. The obvious solution for this is marketing, but unfortunately, many startups make dire marketing mistakes which prevent them from truly getting out there and making a name for themselves.
Today, we will be looking at those mistakes and how they can be avoided.
Getting Swept Up in Hype
Marketing is one of the more popular business-related niches when online content is in question and certain techniques and tactics get overhyped for no good reason apart from that they sound cool. Every now and then, you will hear about the “next big thing” such as VR marketing, or Instagram marketing or account-based marketing.
These can all be used in a smart and ultimately effective way, if they are used properly. Unfortunately, since all these “marketing experts” praise them to high heavens, startup owners get swept up in it and they start throwing money on stuff that will never work for them.
Because of this, all startup owners should research various marketing techniques and tactics, especially those that they might consider employing.
Doing Content Marketing Wrong
Content marketing is a fantastic way for a startup to spread the word about its existence. It is cheap (basically free), it can be done relatively quickly and it can have great effects on the visibility of the startup, in a number of ways.
Unfortunately, content marketing also tends to be done wrong by many companies, startups included.
For instance, some startups start doing it too late, thinking they will get spectacular results after a month of blogging. No. You need to start producing content as soon as possible and produce a lot of it.
Other startups just do not know what kind of content to put out. Be creative, be interesting, solve problems for readers. Don’t do just written blog posts. Do videos. Post on YouTube. Post a lot of pictures.
Another thing that startup owners often forget to do when doing content marketing is distributing their content. It is not enough simply to post an article or a video – you need to promote it. Use social media, use email, use your contacts. Be creative.
In the end, content marketing is all about being creative and making your startup stand out.
Not Tracking Results
Everyone knows what marketing can do for a young startup. All startup owners know what the ultimate goal behind their marketing efforts is. Unfortunately, not all startup owners know how to identify the metrics that will let them know they are getting the results.
A great example of this is when startups start doing social media marketing. They go out on Twitter and Facebook and they start getting busy. After a while, they have a whole bunch of followers and they are getting likes and shares and retweets and whatnot. They are super happy. Then, after a few months, they realize that all of these so-called vanity metrics are getting them nowhere. The real, actual results are missing.
Startups need to be smart about tracking their results. They need to know which metrics really matter for them. For example, how many new leads they are getting per every dollar spent? How long does it take to increase the number of sales after a certain marketing campaign starts? How big is the effect on organic traffic? These are all the kinds of questions that really matter.
Getting likes and retweets doesn’t matter anywhere near as much.
Startups are usually well-known for their adaptability. Their owners are ready to pivot at a moment’s notice and they will do everything they can to keep their enterprise afloat.
Except when it comes to marketing.
This happens because of bad advice, because of a lack of resources or awareness and because they think a tactic will work if they give it enough time.
Sometimes, it is simply the time to give it up and start doing something else. Sometimes things just do not work out. Sometimes sticking with your guns will cause more harm than well and you will be wasting your money.
This is why startup owners need to be adaptable. Sometimes a marketing agency doesn’t work out. Sometimes the content is not good enough and the startup needs an overhaul of their entire content marketing strategy. Sometimes ab testing for apps will show that the app is not doing well for some very silly reason.
Startup owners should never be too scared to try out new marketing directions and to alter their course in order to get better results.
Marketing is always difficult. When you are a startup with limited means and time at your disposal, it is even more difficult.
Be smart. Do your research. Track your results. Adapt.