Must have marketing strategies for tech startup success
July 23, 2019
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What is the first word that pops into your mind when you think of tech startups? Innovative, fast-growing, flexible, and entrepreneurial are strong contestants for that title. Marketing research, however, tends to not be featured in the top 5 answers.
But that’s not a good thing. Strong marketing strategies are crucial for a tech startup to survive in today’s market. So much so, that poor marketing is within the top 10 most important reasons causing startup failure.
Even if a marketing plan couldn’t be farther from your mind when starting your company, it’s essential you devote a considerable chunk of your time to marketing. Or, if you haven’t listed any marketing jobs yet, you can ask a marketing agency to do it for you. Why? Because even if your product is the most amazing thing since the invention of Netflix, it will fail if you don’t advertise it properly.
Here are 7 must have marketing strategies your startup needs to succeed.
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1. Efficient targeting
Before you do anything, you have to know who your startup is targeting. And no, according to the marketing definition, “awesome tech-savvy people” is not a proper target market.
Even if you’re convinced your product would appeal to a larger crowd, you’ll have to start smaller than “Americans between the ages of 16 and 60”. Why?
Most people don’t like change. Buying an unfamiliar product created by an unknown brand is well outside the comfort zone of many people. Add to this the unbelievably large amount of advertising an average person is exposed to, and you’ll end up with an unsuccessful marketing campaign and a wagonload of unsold products.
Instead, target the crowd of early adopters. This group, about 14% of the general population, is eager to try innovative products. Find out who the early adopters in your niche are (i.e. fitness-obsessed HR managers in their early 30s) and target them in your first campaign. Once they’re on board, they’ll be a big help spreading the word to a larger crowd (aka early majority adopters, about 34% of the population).
2. Content marketing
While somewhat slow to take effect, content marketing is a powerful tool in every marketing manager’s hands. With the right content, your website becomes a magnet for potential new clients. How?
Start a blog. Write articles about topics your target market is interested in, and make sure you use the keywords they actually type into their search engines when looking for information. This process is part of search engine optimization (SEO) that directs organic traffic to your site.
Want to amp up your website but don't know where to start? Click here to learn more about how SEO can help your small business!
3. Paid search
Since SEO generally takes 4-6 months to take effect, you’ll need something to cover the gap from now to then. This is where paid search comes in.
Pay-per-click services like Google Ads help you cut the line. When somebody types in the keywords you previously specified, your business will be listed among the first search results. And the best thing is: you only pay if the person actually clicks on your ad.
4. Social media
Right now, everything happens on social media. Find out which platform(s) your target market prefers and set up an account there.
Share your blog posts on social media sites, and engage with your followers regularly. Also, engage with other businesses in your niche. Join the conversation and get your name out there as often as possible.
To help things along, you may even consider hiring a social media influencer. Marketing companies often work with influencers to reach their target market. Influencer marketing is particularly effective if you want to raise brand awareness, reach new audiences, and increase sales.
Finding the right influencer can be tricky. But knowing your target market’s preferences, your budget limitations, and your brand’s image will help narrow down your choices.
5. Email marketing
Email is one of the easiest ways to grow a marketing network. Contrary to popular belief, email marketing is not dead yet. Far from it.
According to Emarketer’s survey, email can get a 122% return on investment (ROI) for marketers. On top of this, email marketing is a highly convenient and scalable tool for your startup.
Make sure to use catchy subject lines, engaging copy and visuals, and optimize your email content for both desktop and mobile use.
Do you know those little boxes on the right hand side of your screen, featuring ads for sites you’ve recently visited? No, that’s not James Bond in action. That’s retargeting.
Retargeting allows you to chase visitors who’ve abandoned your site. Seeing your logo again triggers potential customers’ memories and helps build confidence for your brand. According to researchers, people exposed to retargeting ads are 70% more likely to become customers of the brand in question.
This makes retargeting an excellent choice when it comes to building your brand’s image, reputation, and credibility.
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7. Viral marketing
Viral marketing is one of the most cost-effective ways to sell a product. You create an ad and your customers do the rest of the work: share it, engage with it, comment on it, and – hopefully – buy it.
While this sounds great, you first need to take a crucial step – creating a highly shareable ad. There are several ways to achieve that.
Featuring humor, graphics or stats, practical knowledge, and a positive attitude will help your content go viral. For example, a how-to video about your product using humor and awe-inspiring statistics would be a good way to start.
Use a combination of the outlined marketing strategies to create excitement and brand awareness in your target market. Make sure you have a sound marketing plan in place before you open up shop. This way, your startup will have a much higher chance at success.