Does your start-up business really need a marketing strategy?

We’ve already written about the importance of great branding for start-ups, but what about a solid marketing strategy? Is it really such an essential task when you’re busy building your business, or can it be shelved for a time when the company is more developed?

Spoiler alert: we know that investing in your branding is just as important as investing in your product, and the same goes for your marketing strategy. Getting one set up from the start will make all the difference as you go from a start-up to a scale-up business and beyond.

Here are some of the reasons why, yes, your start-up really does need a marketing strategy.

Understanding your target market

While building a strong marketing strategy, you’ll learn more about your target market than you ever thought you could know. This information will be incredibly valuable to you, so you can develop your products in accordance, while ensuring your marketing activities are as relevant as possible.

Once you understand your target customers better, you’ll also get to know their problems and pain points. Once you have a clear view of these, you’ll be able to determine how your products can be marketed to provide the right solutions.

Understanding your audience and tailoring your marketing strategy to cater for their needs, whims, and unique behaviours will go a long way to setting you apart from your competitors as well.

Spending your money wisely

Without a clear strategy or plan in place, you’ll probably end up spending money on ad campaigns and platforms that aren’t right for your market. It’s tempting to spend a little bit here and there to just see what happens, but more often than not this ends up being a waste of your precious time and money.

While bigger, more established businesses may have money to burn trying out every new social platform and campaign idea, as a start-up you’ll need to allocate your budget extremely carefully.

Successful marketing is about generating consistent, regular communication – getting your messages heard in the right places and at the right times. A well-researched and defined marketing strategy will help ensure you’re not wasting money on ineffective ads, instead ensuring every campaign is aligned with your goals and suited to your audience.

Staying relevant and consistent

Your branding will help your business to become a recognisable entity, but it’s the job of the marketing strategy to ensure all your messaging, campaigns and materials utilise this branding to its full potential.

Everything you’re putting out into the world from your email signature to your website to your social media should be relevant to your audience and consistent with your brand guidelines and voice.

Without a proper strategy in place, it’s easy to get distracted by shiny new marketing opportunities and forget to take stock and ensure your efforts are recognisable and appropriate for your customers.

Setting goals and measuring ROI

Without clear direction, you can’t set proper goals and objectives for your marketing activities – and without these in place, how do you know if your efforts are successful?

As a start-up with a limited budget, you need to know which areas of marketing are generating the highest returns on investment, and which aren’t providing any useful results at all.

Not every platform and campaign will be right for your business, so by setting goals and measuring your results accurately, you’ll learn where your efforts are best placed and help build stronger marketing plans for the future.

Ensuring everyone’s on the same page

You may have an in-house marketing department, an agency working behind the scenes, or a pool of freelancers to turn to when you need them. However you decide to manage your marketing, you’ll need everyone on the team to be on the same page.

By creating a strong marketing strategy, you can share your plans, goals, and desired results easily, providing a point of reference that everyone can study and turn to when factoring in their own work.

This is particularly useful when someone approaches you with an idea for a campaign. You’ll have somewhere to check whether it’s relevant and right for your business, and if it doesn’t line up with the strategy, you’ll also have a valid reason to explain why you can’t do it.

Allocating resources effectively

Your marketing strategy will be an incredibly useful tool for your business when it comes to allocating resources. With a limited budget as a start-up business, your strategy can provide insight into the level of staffing, equipment and software you’re going to need from the get-go.

Without a proper strategy, you may find yourself paying out for software that never gets used, technology without the right capabilities, and staff with the wrong skillsets.

When considering your long-term marketing plans, you should find the solutions to these resource challenges in your strategy, and maybe even find cost-effective methods to reduce your outgoings and yield higher returns.

 

If you’re a start-up looking to develop a thoroughly researched and well-defined marketing strategy, we can give you a hand. Take a look at our website and if we look like your kind of people, let’s chat!

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