Starting a business can easily be one of the most simultaneously nerve-racking and wonderful experiences for anyone who makes the endeavor, but there are certain things that every startup business owner should always be aware of. The key to being able to pull off a startup successfully is to keep the following things in mind at all times.
Trying to survive off of your first sales is a bad idea
When it comes to beginning your startup, you’ll have to anticipate that the first few quarters are more likely than not to end without a profit; there may be exceptions, but it is more rational to anticipate that you will spend the earliest stages building up rapport rather than raking in cash.
Naturally, you’re going to want to build up enough cushion to ensure that you can survive the initial periods of relationship-building over profiteering. Don’t go forward with your potential sales being your only source of financial support.
Value is a higher priority than conversions
Of course you didn’t go into business expecting to pay your bills on thank you notes, but nevertheless, you are going to want to prioritize giving people value over trying to take their money out of their wallets.
Because there are so many different options for people to choose from in any market today, what will give them the confidence to consider your business is the credibility that it exudes. Make an effort to exemplify your level of expertise in the market before emphasizing the transactional nature of your business; they already know that you’re interested in making sales, so focus more on telling them what they don’t know.
Identify your target demographic as soon as possible
The thing about target demographics that many startup business owners may not be aware of is that it should be thought of more in terms of an individual than a broad group of people. Though it may seem counter-intuitive, you should always aim to appeal to a single person instead of a group; that single person will not be the only one of their kind, but they will feel personally communicated with in a way that an untargeted campaign doesn’t.
Know the zeitgeist
No matter what the market is, the most successful startup is headed by one who is intimately familiar with the ways of the times. Read the newspapers and become deeply immersed in public discussions over topical matters. Though you may not be a media agency, your appeal to your target demographic must be contextually fine-tuned to the culture and beliefs held by people who are attached to current events.
Emphasize your main proposition
Chances are that you are not going to be a lone wolf in your business’s market, but you don’t need to reinvent the wheel just to have a successful startup. The startups that are able to survive the rough initial period are those that know how to exemplify the single most unique and identifiable benefits of their offer; this is known as the unique selling proposition (USP) or the single-minded proposition (SMP).
Chances are that your startup will run into one or two unexpected challenges along the way, but as long as you keep the above things in mind, you will ensure that your startup has the best chance of going smoothly. No doubt you’ve put a lot of passion into your project, but even the most talented and passionate people will fail without a proper vehicle to push their passion forward; this is the importance of marketing.
Forbes reports that 88% of B2B marketers use content marketing as part of their strategy, and 76% of B2C marketers use content marketing; it’s safe to say that those falling outside of these statistics aren’t on top of the quarterly earnings reports.
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