Product Marketing Strategies every startup should adopt
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Do you want to make your startup successful through innovative, out-of-the-box, and cost-efficient product marketing strategies?
Of course, you do; else, why’d you be here?
Everyone business wants more customers, more signups, and more revenues. To reach a massive audience, startups must use different growth hacking strategies. Successful entrepreneurs across the globe have made these marketing strategies an integral part of their business, and it’s about time you do the same with your startup.
But problems lie in which growth strategy to use and how to implement those successfully without spending too much.
It’s challenging to make a big creative splash of out-of-box product marketing strategies because great strategies don’t appear out of the blue. They require an innovative thought process and overwhelming hours of brainstorming sessions.
If you are serious about your startup plan, I’m sure you’ll find this article valuable. But what if we provide you with time-tested product marketing strategies that work? So, please stay on the board, bookmark this page, and witness as we reveal the best experiment-driven strategy for growing a business.
3-Foundations of Start-up Marketing Strategies
In today’s digital world, there is an aspect of product development that startups often overlook. It is Virality. Product development today is an integral part of the marketing strategy. It’s not about creating a product that amazes the audience; it’s more about building marketing engines within your product which can help you drive a one-to-many scenario. For example, when one user joins your product, they go more customers. Think about this: Your product alone can turn one user into ten users. The best way to do this is by creating a product roadmap around offering better customer service, and some of the great ways are discussed in the next section of this article.
- Finding your perfect audience
The first thing that should come to your mind when you plan a marketing plan is the audience. Many innovative businesses fail because they don’t find the right audience and channel all their marketing tactics in the wrong direction. The ultimate difference between a successful and a failed startup is how well they segmented their target audience. Create all the growth strategies around your customers because they are the end users.
- Customer Feedback Loop
Collecting and working on customer feedback is essential for startups to provide users with the product they need. The customer Feedback loop informs your decision-making and influences the product roadmap. While you create strategies to market your product, you must seek regular feedback from your audience.
10 -Highly Effective Growth Strategies
Have you ever wondered how Startups like Dropbox gained so much popularity in such a short time?
It’s because of the referral marketing strategies. If you want your startup to have a significant following quickly, you must implement the referral strategy. In this program, you allow an existing user to refer or promote your product to their friends/family.
The referral strategy is straightforward and highly effective, which explains why it is used by most startups today. Through this strategy, you are most likely to have new customers because they received personal recommendations from their acquaintances.
92% of people prefer personal advice (same as word-of-mouth strategy) more than other forms of marketing. Build a referral program for your product from scratch, get your customers excited to share your creation with their friends, and offer referral rewards to promote it heavily.
“Dropbox, the cloud-based storage application, went from 100,000 users in 2008 to more than 4,00,000 users in 2009. On calculation, they witnessed an increase of 39% in their user base within a year. What built this most-valued empire was the existing user’s referrals/ word-of-mouth values. Dropbox uses an elementary referral program: for every person you share Dropbox with, you get more storage space. This simple program landed Dropbox with a lot of users.”
- Become the biggest user of your product
If you’ve ventured into a startup and want to introduce the product in the industry, the thumb is becoming the biggest user of your product. As a startup, you’ll find your product or software struggling to gain traction because of an inadequate number of users.
A small user base means not only a little content but also discourages external users from downloading/buying it.
“To break through this problem, Tvisha Technologies, the developer of Troop Messenger, became the biggest users of their office messenger app. All the employees and members in management use the app, leading to more in-depth analysis of the application’s functionalities, and improvise it further with regular updates.”
If you have a small user base, start by becoming the biggest user of your company’s product.
- Bribe the New Users with Some Cash
This may sound like an expensive product marketing strategy, but it is one of the most effective strategies now used by many startups. You are already bound to spend money acquiring new users as a startup. You can spend money on advertising and promoting. But, think about giving that money to the users only?
“PayPal used the same strategy to increase the user base when it was launched. In the initial year, PayPal offered $10 to every newly registered customer and another $10 for referring it to another customer. Hence, the total cost per customer was $20. While this may sound very expensive for companies short on finances, it is one of the highly effective methods of attracting and retaining customers.”
- Follow Your Competitors but also Differentiate your brand
There is a reason why a particular company has become your competitor- they are either doing better than you, or you are failing at being ahead of them. As a startup, you might not have the best experience in the industry, but if your rival has established a name in the industry, they sure are using strategies that work.
But your focus shouldn’t only be on following the rivals and differentiating yourself from the competition. So, an important step would be keeping an eye on the enemy and following them for a while. Follow their strategies and find ways to outdo them by brainstorming strategies that’ll work in your company’s favor. This will give a unique identity to your product and help in the differentiation of your brand.
“An example can be Inbound (Hubspot’s marketing event), whose main competitors are the content marketing companies offering similar events and marketing programs. Inbound differentiated itself by featuring both the non-marketing and marketing speakers, being transparent about their agenda, and emphasizing to the audience the benefits they will get as attendees.”
An aggressive content marketing strategy always works, no matter whether your startup is in B2B or B2C domain. 90% of the B2B companies and 88% of the B2C companies are committed to an Aggressive Content Strategy. You can follow the same approach for your startup.
When creating content, try to write them around the different stages of a buyer’s journey. Make sure the content is helpful, informative, and has the potential to increase the conversion rate. As a bonus, support the content with SEO and SMO to boost brand recognition and create a relationship with the consumers.
“Hubspot is a perfect example of this strategy. It’s a SaaS company that helps businesses to attract visitors and convert them into leads. Unlike other companies, Hubspot creates content developed around different stages of a buyer’s journey. The blog has a catchy headline, SEO-optimized content, and accurate information. The articles educate users and help them find potential solutions to their problems.”
- Emotive branding
In seve same way, you can connect with your audience through emotional ads and content. Eral research has revealed that dynamic branding outsells logical branding. It may sound impractical at once, but emotions are one of the critical factors affecting buying decisions. In the year 2015, the most shared advertisement were the ones that relied on emotional awareness like inspiration, happiness, motivation, and friendship. Dynamic content can be an excellent way of targeting the audience. Hence, create ads that induce emotions among your viewers and urge your audience to ask questions. Remember that your consumers first tend to be dynamic and then strategic. So, develop your content, campaigns, and ads around this only.
“Optimove, automation software solutions, emphasized the emotional connection with users. The company’s automation software emphasizes re-engagement and retention, providing personalized content, and using the emotional connection to appeal to the customer’s preferences and tastes. They use segmentation to send personalized deals to keep loyal customers.”
- Leveraged Acquisition
Partnerships and acquisitions can be powerful mediums for hacking the growth of a startup. Through acquisitions, the startup can emphasize what it wants to drive and where it wants to focus. Several startups create simple products that can carry a message from another company.
“Salesforce teamed up with Skype by disrupting contact management while Skype was disrupting the telephony sector. Salesforce’s formula was simple. With basic coding, it created a tool that could plug a user’s contacts within Skype and manage conference calls. It was not only a brilliant idea but also a brilliant collaboration. Both the companies understood the potential of the collaboration and wrapped a larger and better feature for their customers.”
- PR APIs:
You’ll have to play big stakes if you want to make it big with your startup. You have no alternative but to make national headlines through efficient PRs and unique promotional campaigns. PRs for product marketing have APIs around which your company should format the stories.
These APIs can be ranked in order of priority, and they have immense potential to impact the audience. Here are the five APIs ranked in charge of the effects they can have on your target audience:
- Company Acquisition
- Product Release
Creating controversies around your product will always get you the coverage you need for your development. By argument, we don’t mean to emphasize fake stories or subjects that tell nothing about your target market. You can make controversy that can help your consumers understand what’s different in your product.
“Salesforce didn’t create controversy around its competitor Oracle; instead, it did it around keeping the contacts on your server. Your PRs can revolve around company acquisition and partnerships. Finds methods to acquire a company and later position it as a partnership. Create National headlines about the product release and invest in promotional campaigns. You can also use the hiring API as it assures great coverage.”
Can any startup ever ignore the potential of email marketing? I bet not.
It is the most effective strategy for attracting buyers at little to no cost. To avail of the benefits of email marketing, you must first collect their email addresses. If your company has an official website, placing a signup column for visitors is the best way to accumulate email addresses. The key is diversifying the emails with how-to-articles, infographics, and non-commercial videos. Don’t send paid advertorials because your subscribers will soon opt out of receiving the emails.
“One of the best examples is Canva: an online graphic design software. In their email marketing, Canva makes their user and their designs the highlight of the newsletter. It celebrates the user’s current feat and sets a landmark for more motivation. Canva uses the newsletter to appreciate ongoing uses and encourages them to continue designing by providing them with new goals.”
In today’s digital marketing era, who can ever forget the potential of social media marketing? The platforms like Facebook and Instagram have immense potential to benefit your startups. As your business’s presence grows on the web, more people will recognize it. You can gain more exposure through these channels, and with paid ads, you can get the desired traffic and exposure. First, aim to get the correct direction and then encourage the audience to stay by being responsive.
“An example can be Trello. The company doesn’t rely heavily on pay-per-click campaigns but focuses on word-of-mouth through social media engagement. They have effectively used social media presence to promote valuable features, new updates, and achievements.”
Strategic marketing has always been a challenge for startups. The main issue is that your product is not exposed to the target audience, and your competitor has a strong position in the market. The only way to grow business in such an environment is by using the product above marketing strategies. Every startup must deploy its popular growth strategies and try new things. There is no single strategy that resolves all the marketing issues. You’ve to experiment, analyze, and repeat. Henceforth, never forget to try these strategies.
Author’s Bio: Md Mohsin Ansari is a Marketing Manager at Troop Messenger – a business messenger with all the requisite features. Mohsin is accountable for analyzing the market trends and demographics and dealing with all promotional and media channels. It is a viable Collaboration Software spreading its wings across all industries by bringing all the internal communication in one place. Connect with me on Linkedin.