Starting your own business is the dream of many. But, given the harsh work schedules, limited resources and demanding commitments towards the family that a lot of people have had to cope with in the past, these dreams ended up being shelved indefinitely. It is now, with the advent of social media and at&t internet service connections that startups have taken over like a storm.
The option to go online has cut the costs considerably and the flexibility it provides, by allowing people to work remotely and at odd times, has helped them integrate their dreams into their daily routines. With the introduction of platforms facilitating the sale of all kinds of goods from mere candy to acres of land, the markets have become more accessible to buyers and sellers alike enabling everyone to try their luck. While some have soared to new heights, others have not been as fortunate.
The startup is the new buzzword that everyone loves using. It’s trendy, it’s cool but just because you use it doesn’t mean you can create a company that’s successful. While I wish that weren’t the case, many think a startup is a piece of cake were simply setting up their website or Facebook page secures their “happily ever after”.
On the contrary, startups require hard work and commitment and while website and social media pages are important, they will not get you the results if you don’t use them properly. Many people begin their startup journeys every year, but only a few manage to establish their dominance and carve their market share. Those who fail to make their mark share some common mistakes. Here are five that almost all startups fall prey to.
Marketing your products to everyone
Not all visitors are potential customers. The first step to any marketing strategy is figuring out your target audience. Many startups try to play it safe and in doing so they try to appeal to everyone, effectively losing their appeal in the process. You should focus your efforts on the demographic that is most likely to consume your product or services. Given that your resources are most likely limited, casting too big of a net can set you on the path of failure.
Approaching the audience through the wrong channel
There are a number of marketing channels you can utilize to establish your brand. To choose the right one you must evaluate which channel is used the most by your target audience. If its B2C market, Facebook may be where you should focus your efforts, if it’s B2B, you might want to consider LinkedIn. These are the basic; there are a ton of other channels you can look into.
Conflating developing a website with digital marketing
You may have developed a website but if the message it carries is not getting out there, what is the point? Simply having a beautiful website isn’t enough. You have to work on Search Engine Optimization and Conversion Rate Optimization strategies to attract traffic, create leads and make conversions.
Neglecting your website once its launched
You may have put up the best website there is, but if you do not provide the necessary support, all your hard work will go down the drain. All startups should invest in agencies that provide ongoing web support and development, ensuring your online face sustains a growth-driven design.
Ignoring customers’ feedback
The number of startups that fall into the trap of self-importance is just too high. Startups are notoriously known for the sin of forgetting the most basic driver of sales i.e. customer satisfaction. You must listen to what your customers have to say, feedback is essential for identifying the faults that you may have missed. By including a survey or a feedback box, you can ensure there is no miscommunication between the company and the customers. This practice is also important if you want to build customer loyalty.
These things might seem simple but when you are too close to the company you build, you may not see them with such clarity. However, with commitment and hard work and a will to do right by your customers, there is no doubt you will make your mark.
Baldwin Jackson is a vivacious writer and digital marketing consultant, involved in taking businesses a notch higher. Since I am a part of the digital marketing industry for over 6 years, I know exactly how to use creativity and analytical abilities to assist a variety of online businesses. Also, I can proudly say that I have helped different brands improve their online visibility and create great lucrative opportunities for them. Well, in my spare time when I’m not working which is not often, you will find me engrossed in playing online games– thanks to my stable and steady Internet for giving me a lag-free gaming experience!