How To Promote a Startup

Regardless of whether you are a beginner in the field of entrepreneurship or a real business shark, you probably know that one of the most important tests on the way to success is finding the target audience. Attracting customers and increasing sales is the challenge for your marketing and promotional strategies.

Startup promotion is no small feat, but instead of studying boring marketing theory, it’s better to relax and read this post, isn’t it? That’s exactly why we’ve put together this list of tips for you. All of the recommendations are tried and true – many companies in different industries will confirm. Of course, there is no universally successful strategy for everyone – in many ways, marketing is a matter of chance. However, if you follow the basic principles of promotion, crowds of consumers willing to work with you won’t make you wait too long.

Marketing strategy is crucial
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Why does promotion matter for startups?

Before putting a lot of resources into a marketing digital strategy, you should clearly understand why you need to promote your startup. Well, business is a race, and the strongest wins it. We mean the race for the attention and recognition of the audience. And the louder and more memorable you declare yourself, the sooner you will win (to tell the truth, this race will continue throughout the whole life of your business 🙂)

If we move away from metaphors and the principles of how to promote a startup in a few clear points, it will look like that: 

  • Increase brand awareness – this is how you will expand your brand identity among the masses
  • Offer appropriate information – the world should know what you offer and be confident in the quality of this product
  • Provide customer traffic – attracting consumers is the basis of your work
  • Increase sales and profits – what you started all this for

Startup promotion ideas

1. Branding – the root of everything

Before actively promoting your values, you need to have them clearly structured and packaged in a carefully thought-out brand. This is not only your name and logo – the brand includes many components: values, mission, vision, slogan, identity, etc. By the way, learn more about the important components of a personal brand logo in our useful post.

Be sure that you and all your employees clearly understand all the details and subtleties of your startup’s branding. When you believe in your product, it will be much easier for you to make everyone around you believe in it, too.

It’s crucial to keep your brand consistent. Your color palette is not just some 2-3 colors – it includes the shades of those for faded or highlighted states of elements, neutral backgrounds, contrasting colors to make your website WCAG-compliant and simply legible, etc. Similarly, typography guidelines do not just state the font names but describe the size, weight, kerning, etc., and the use of those in specific cases. Not to mention that your logo, tagline, imagery, and other assets should be adapted for the media where you plan to display them.

When working out a branding strategy, we create thorough guidelines for our clients. You won’t just get your logo in .svg: we put together a nice brand book with guidelines for all the assets – even the suggested tone of voice for your blog and SMM.

2. Optimize your website

A lot of processes take place on the Internet, including a huge layer of marketing channels. It’s about a digital strategy for promoting a startup. Pay attention to SEO (Search Engine Optimization). This is a great lever to increase your website’s visibility and traffic. Thanks to SEO, you can build and maintain relationships with your potential customers with minimum steps. In this case, it is important to constantly be aware of changes and check the compliance of your content with the latest SEO trends.

The speed of your site matters as well. Speed affects the SEO rankings of your company. Put yourself in the place of a site visitor: most likely you would close a page that loads longer than average. If your site’s visitors would have to wait for your content, you can lose a lot of potential customers, think about regular speed checks.

3. Analyze your audience

Your audience is the driving force of a startup. Your main task is to meet their needs faster and better than competitors. At first glance, this is a very simple formula. However, it is not so easy to even understand what exactly consumers need. 

The solution is to study your audience in detail. In other words, provide a target audience segmentation. Divide them into groups according to their age, gender, marital status, geographic locations, etc.

Next, you will have to do a lot of research and surveys to determine their true concerns, wants, and needs. Do not stop at any methods (within the law, of course). Arrange experiments, focus groups, surveys, interviews, trial versions, or find a unique way of getting information. Your main motivation is to determine the pains consumers have and solve these pains. 

Use your own opinion, too – put yourself in the users’ shoes. Evaluate the situation as objectively as possible. Do you think you lack anything in this product? What can be improved? Are there any features that are excessive or annoying? But don’t rely on your opinion more than the audience’s: if you think you know people’s needs, it doesn’t mean you actually do.

4. SMM (Social Media Marketing)

This is one of the most important tips for promoting a startup. In the modern world, social networks have penetrated into all spheres of our life, especially in business and marketing. The promotion of a startup in social networks (also called a social media presence – a huge part of digital presence) allows you not only to declare yourself and increase visibility, but also to build relationships with the audience, as well as try different communication strategies. 

There is no doubt that the choice of a suitable social network depends directly on your target audience. If you start promoting law or other formal services on TikTok, then you are more likely to look inappropriate in an entertainment context. At the same time, it all depends on the pitch, because social networks allow you to implement the most creative approach to promoting a startup. Be recognizable. Also, be fresh and up-to-date.

5. Use multiple channels

Multichannel marketing is a great idea to make your brand well-known in different audience segments. In addition, it is important to understand that people differ in how they perceive information. That is why, when you use different communication formats and channels for your startup, many more people will be able to get to the bottom of it. Here are some of the examples:

  • Make a video. A spectacular, dynamic presentation will definitely capture the attention of visuals. Besides, it’s a great idea to make the video informative and add infographics there.
  • Share the news. For those customers who have previously left you their email, you can make a newsletter of newsletters. They do not know that they are interested in learning about your new offers until they read the subject of the letter. This is a great opportunity to take advantage of an innocent CTA. Find out how to do it correctly in our post.
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  • Be heard on free ad sites. Free Ad Sites like Amazon or eBay have very high rankings and attract millions of potential customers. Some percentage of them will definitely need your product, and they will pay attention to the banner hanging in the corner of the site.
  • Create your merch for loyal customers. Items with your logo can become not only a sign of attention and a pleasant gift for the client, but also an excellent opportunity to promote your company. You literally create a walking advertisement and spread information about yourself through your customers. Let a word of mouth work here.
  • Use buddy marketing (cross-promotion). Collaborate with other brands to expand the brand awareness area. It doesn’t have to be brands with similar specifics, use creativity and find interesting candidates for cooperation. Think about unexpected combinations of complementary products. In addition, if your brand has its own blog, pay attention to guest blogging.

6. Meet Your Competitors

In point 3, we mentioned that you need not only to know the problems of your customers, but also to offer the solution faster and better than your competitors. It is simply impossible to do without a qualitative analysis of competitors in the market. 

This tip to promote a startup can help you understand your strategic direction. You can carefully examine what your competitors do to identify two things:

1. Weaknesses

Notice the mistakes of competitors and try to pump these sides in your brand. This will give you a significant competitive advantage.

2. Strategy

Track the route your competitors follow and analyze their strategic decisions. This way, you can use their plans as a test and, in the future, choose the most advantageous solutions to use in your company.

7. Invest in valuable feedback and reviews

People tend to trust the experience of others, especially when it comes to influencers or popular bloggers. Do not underestimate the benefits of a block with reviews on your site. Make it well-organized and as realistic as possible. It’s not a surprise that many people use randomly generated comments from users, but it’s better to collect a database of real feedback. It is especially valuable when the review mentions product features, as well as the contacts of the person who left this comment so that you can ask about their experience in more detail.

Think of thank-you gifts for giving reviews. Offer customers discounts or special offers for leaving feedback. Pay attention to the influencers of social network stars in your field. Send them a test sample of your product, saying that you will be very pleased to receive feedback from them. The opinion of trusted, famous bloggers is a very valuable source of new consumer flows.

Real reviews for startup promotion

Final thoughts

Any marketing plan should have clear goals, structure, and objectives. When wondering how to promote a startup, you should draw up such a plan. All of the above ideas work great in the right context. So, before using specific ones, make sure that they will work in your favor. Also, think about combining several ways to promote a startup to enhance the effectiveness of your marketing campaign. However, here, you need to be careful not to overdo it. If your product is a wreck, consumers will doubt the honesty of your advertising, and you risk losing their loyalty.

Do not expect quick results. You will not see crowds and queues for your product the day after you start on promotion. But, using the recommendations from our list, you will definitely come to success and increased sales. Choose promotion channels wisely and get more customer streams for you!

Alex Belov

Alex is a professional web developer and the CEO of our digital agency. WordPress is Alex’s business - and his passion, too. He gladly shares his experience and gives valuable recommendations on how to run a digital business and how to master WordPress.


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