Most founders don’t think about marketing until they’re ready to launch their product.
They miss out on the power of having a community and being top of mind for potential customers.
If you leave talking about what you’re building to the day of the launch, you’re more likely going to stress about it and find it challenging to get the word out. It will be a day you have waited for a long time but one that hasn’t created the big impact you hoped for.
In this post, I'll share the reasons you should start your marketing now and 5 guiding questions to help you come up with a communication plan.
🧠 Here’s why marketing should be top of mind as of day 1
1️⃣ Helps to build your community & early fans
The more you share about your journey and what you’re building, the more chance there is for people to follow along and feel your passion. Highly suggest reading about community first marketing. Here's my detailed guide.
2️⃣ Brand awareness takes time
If you leave talking about your product to the day of launch, that’s essentially day 1 of letting the world know you exist. Even though you’ve been working on the business for a while, no one knew. You have to communicate your value through content for people to realize you exist and to consider your solution. Start early to plant the seeds.
3️⃣ Reduces effort to attract media, investors & customers
The more m content you put out there, the less effort you have to invest for outbound and cold communication. Producing the right content will drive your target audience(s) to you versus you chasing for them when you need them.
4️⃣ Flexes your self promotion muscle
As en entrepreneur, you have to sell your product, your idea and your skills over and over again. Marketing is a way to do that intelligently for the right audience. The more you do it, the better you get.
🚀 5 guiding questions for early-stage businesses
On a daily basis, I work with startup founders who have spent the past several months or year building the MVP of their product and are now in the phase of finding their first users or customers. They are small teams with limited resources and have to be scrappy with their approach. This is typically the transition from building phase to selling phase and requires some growth hacking. If marketing and selling are not your forte, it may not be the easiest experience.
(P.S. This would also be relevant if you're a small business owner or solopreneur.)
Here's the quick exercise we did with one of the teams who had recently begun reaching out to companies in their target audience and were not hearing back. You can ask yourself the same questions to come up with your communication strategy.
Who are you reaching out to?
Have you narrowed down your target audience? Can you narrow it down even further and identify 10-20 top clients that fit your ideal customer profile that could really benefit from your offer. The more pain they have around what you could solve for them, the higher chance there is for them to give you a shot. This is especially a good approach if you're doing outbound acquisition.
Which method(s) are you using?
Are you doing an outbound or inbound approach? Are you able to afford creating content and growing an audience to attract attention to your business or is this not applicable for you at this stage? If you can grow your following through content, you'll need a focused communication strategy that matches your audience's interests.
Which channels are you using?
The number of available channels is incredibly large, so you have to be strategic. Social media, website, newsletter, forums, external communities, third-party media, cold messaging, events and even phone calls could be an option! Which ones make sense considering the skills you have in the team and the timeline you have?
What are you offering?
What is the timeline and level of engagement required from the client's side? Can you make the onboarding easier and faster so they have less objections? Offering a free trial, a discount or sometimes even a giveaway can be good incentives - is this an option for you?
How is your messaging?
Are you doing a long introduction that talks about you and your business and asking for a 15 minute call, or are you using the problem-agitate-solution (PAS) method in your message? Believe it or not, even if you nail all of the above questions, your messaging your make or break it. Research best direct mail practices and experiment with different message copy to test the reactions.
Remember: marketing is not a magic trick you leave to the last minute and use when you need it. 🎩🪄🐇
The earlier you start thinking about it, the better.
Let me know if you'd like me elaborate on any of the above questions!
2 Ways I Can Help You When You're Ready
1. Be a better marketer with the resources I created, including a kickass course to help you land your dream marketing job, templates and lists of resources to accelerate your learning.
2. Get in touch to join Superside, Integromat, Whatagraph and many others to promote your brand or business through partnered content on YouTube and other social media platforms to an audience of self-learner marketers!