At a luncheon this week, I spoke with a lovely lady sitting adjacent to me. Her family owns a prominent jewelry store. We began chatting about everything from her engagement ring to her social media (of course.) She mentioned that a company came in and gave her a proposal to update her Social Media for $40,000! I laughed… I laughed hard. Either this company was completely out of touch or they have absolutely no idea about competitive pricing. In another chat this week with a friend of mine, who has her own small company, I learned that PR firms come in wanting upwards of $8,000 to work with her. With quotes ranging all over the place, where do you even start? Need a little guidance? I have come up with a check-list of Marketing Strategies for Start-ups that will offer just that!
- Market Placement- Generally people open a company because they have a passion in a particular industry and/or they see a need in the marketplace for their products or services. Define what separates you from all the competition out there? Why is this product different/better than anything on the market?
- Define Your Brand- I say to everyone I meet, “what are five words that describe your brand?” These five words should be mimicked in every aspect of your business from your logo to the content that leaves your company. This is how you want customers to perceive your brand.
- Web Presence- We are seeing a paradigm shift in web presence. Customers are now moving from websites to Social Media to do research and look at companies. Websites can range in price (from $1000s to someone once quoted me $60,000 for an e-commerce website)! Websites are great and necessary, especially if you are selling products. However, ensuring that your products are on Social Media is a must. Make sure that you are giving quality time to the platform you choose! If you are limited on time, use only ONE type of Social Media. It is better to be really great at one than failing at three!
- Industry Leader- Setting yourself apart as an expert in your industry is a must! I highly recommend using blogs, content post on social media, or emailing to set yourself apart from your competition. Adding short snip-its of valuable information for your current and future customers is a must! Want to build your business network? Reach out to like-minded bloggers and ask to be a guest blogger for a day with all of your expertise and knowledge!
- Getting the Word Out- Having a PR company to solely focus on communicating your brand in the way that you want your customers to perceive your company is great! However, budgets of small companies tend to prohibit this luxury! All communication that leaves your company should be brand specific and valuable to your customer base. Figure out what Social Media works best for your company and utilize it. Send out your own Press Releases. Call and partner with like minded businesses in the community that allow you to utilize their customer base. Network!
- 80/20 Rule- When you are a start-up all customers will be new! So your marketing should be targeting new customers. However, as you grow your customer base will shift. You will start to see returning clientele and your company will see returning clients (approx. 80%.) Once this happens you will have to change your marketing tactics and look at creating loyalty programs that will benefit that returning client.
Now that you know what you need, get that Start Up up and going! Feel like you are already overwhelmed with business as you know it? At Brand X Consultants, we understand companies come in all sizes, budgets, and have changing needs. We are able to effectively run a company’s PR based on our large network of contacts and experience. If you feel that your company is ready to take the next step and grow, reach out to us for a consultation! We will be happy to work with you to achieve your business goals.
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