After starting a new business, you’ll need some way to spread the word about your existence. Marketing involves improving your brand recognition and visibility while attracting new clients. Most entrepreneurs turn to digital marketing. It’s an accessible way to market and advertise your business. Your success in this area isn’t a guarantee.
If you want your business to be successful, you’ll need to think about the efficiency of your marketing strategies. In other words, how much are you getting compared to the time and money you’re investing? Doing this calculation is called your return on investment or ROI. It’s affected by many factors, including the strategies you choose and how you execute them. Most marketers focus almost exclusively on how much they are paying versus how much they are getting in new revenue. But, tt’s also essential to think about how you’re managing your time.
What steps can you take to make sure you’re marketing your new business as efficiently as possible?
Understand Your Goals
First, it’s crucial to identify and understand your goals. Obviously, marketing and advertising are all about raising awareness and attracting new customers. But, what are you specifically trying to achieve, and what are your highest priorities? For example, is it more relevant to you to increase brand recognition, or is it better to get new paying customers as soon as possible? A new source of revenue can play a significant role in which strategies you choose and how you execute them.
You’ll also need to think about your timeline. Some marketing strategies have a very high ROI. These strategies are useful for a wide range of businesses, but they take a long time to develop—sometimes months to years. Other strategies take effect immediately. Sometimes, they guarantee traffic to your site or new leads. Yet, they tend to be much more expensive. What balance would be most appropriate for your business? And, is a short-term or long-term focus more important for you?
If you don’t understand your goals initially, you won’t be able to come up with an effective marketing plan.
Work With an Agency
Thanks to the abundance of content on the Internet, it’s possible to learn the basics of how to market a new business on your own. However, for most businesses, it’s better to work with a digital marketing agency.
According to Crown Media Tech, “Agencies have access to more resources than the average business owner can gather on their own. It’s the only way to make sure your campaign funds are being used efficiently.”
Digital marketing agencies tend to have access to many different niche experts. Rather than hiring a generalist or tracking down a network of your own niche specialists, you can rely on the specialists within an agency. Digital marketing agencies tend to have extended networks. They also have more flexibility when it comes to workloads and service provision. Then, you’ll never have to worry about shortfalls or gaps between availability and needs.
Even more importantly, marketing agencies tend to hold themselves accountable to high standards. They want to keep you as a client. If results are lackluster, they’ll usually go the extra mile to troubleshoot the campaign and make things right.
The flip side is marketing agencies usually cost a few hundred to several thousand dollars a month to employ. The cost depends on the services you’re using. Compared to the results you get, this is still cheaper than what you’d pay for an in-house team.
Learn What You Can, When You Can
Even if you’re delegating most of your marketing work to an external agency, it’s a good idea to learn as much as you can about marketing and advertising. The crucial knowledge about marketing will help you make recommendations for your campaign. It will also be useful for evaluating new angles to try. You can get a critical lens through which you can understand your agency or employee actions.
Start With One Core Strategy
If you’re trying to manage your marketing strategy on your own or if you’re coordinating with a small team, start with one core strategy for your campaign. The core strategy doesn’t have to be your only strategy. But, it should be the focal point of your campaign.
In terms of how to market a new business, a core strategy is beneficial for several reasons:
- Specialty expertise development. If you and your team are focusing almost exclusively on one strategy, you’re going to learn at a much faster rate. Over a period of weeks to months, you and your team members will grow to be much better versed in this strategy. Then, your expertise will start paying off.
- Noise reduction. If you’re new to the world of marketing analytics, focusing on one strategy will help reduce noise in your measurements. You won’t struggle to figure out which of your sub-strategies is having the most impact on brand recognition. Instead, you can focus on the effects of your core strategy.
- Min/maxing. In most marketing campaigns, it’s better to spend a lot of time and money on one, high-quality strategy than to distribute those funds amongst multiple, lower-effort strategies. In other words, this is a focus on quality over quantity. By starting with one core strategy, you can give it your full attention instead of half-heartedly pursuing a dozen strategies simultaneously.
Establish a Clear System for Communication
Much of your marketing success will be dependent on your ability to communicate your ideas and collaborate with others. The principles of communication applies to most situations. Whether you’re meeting with an agency regularly to discuss new ideas and provide direction, or you’re coordinating with a team of writers to ensure your content is relevant.
For starters, establish a clear hierarchy and a precise arrangement of responsibilities. Who is responsible for organizing and coordinating meetings? Which marketing items require your approval, and which ones can be managed independently? You’ll also want to decide which mediums are most appropriate for each type of communication. For example, in-person meetings tend to be counterproductive, primarily when a group email could have accomplished the same goals.
The idea here is to improve the level of transparency and the clarity of communication between groups while minimizing the time spent communicating those ideas. Much of your communication is going to depend on the abilities of the individuals in your network. You may have to mentally translate, as they may not be able to express their ideas and needs as concisely as possible.
Experiment and Make Cuts
As you become more comfortable with your marketing campaign, start to experiment with how you market a new business. That could mean gradually incorporating new marketing strategies with which you’re unfamiliar or trying new angles with your existing focal strategy. Either way, experimentation is all about trying new things, measuring their outcomes, and keeping the angles that work.
It’s easy to become complacent with a marketing strategy. If it’s earning you decent results, you’ll be inclined to keep it running as-is. However, this blinds you to the possibility that there may be a different angle or different combination of strategies that can easily outperform it.
It’s also essential to cut consistently underperforming strategies. You may feel inclined to keep a strategy around indefinitely because you worked hard to understand it, or you’ve already invested so much in the “how-to.” This action is known as the sunk cost fallacy. In some cases, it’s best to cut your losses and move on with something else.
General Productivity Habits
If you’re trying to accomplish more in the marketing and advertising space, you can also focus on strategies designed to improve your bottom-line productivity in general. For example, you could invest in an app (or multiple apps) designed to increase your productivity. You could spend time physically exercising or meditating in the morning, clearing your head, and readying you for the day ahead. A different tactic is to invest in a better project management app or a task management system. Then, you can enforce new rules in how projects and tasks are assigned.
Another strategy is to develop a better hierarchical system for prioritizing your own responsibilities during the day. There isn’t a right or wrong way to approach this since different strategies will have varying levels of effectiveness on different individuals. However, it’s vital to give multiple ideas a shot. Then, see how your productivity is affected.
Practice How to Market a New Business
Marketing a business efficiently isn’t the result of a binary decision; you can’t flip a switch and suddenly start spending your time and money in a highly efficient way. Instead, it’s a gradual process. You’re going to make lots of mistakes as you try to better understand your business and its target demographics, but every mistake you make will bring you closer to an “ideal” setup.
Be ready to fail and ready to learn from your errors. As long as you’re actively trying to improve and make things more efficient, you should be able to succeed.
Student at UC Berkeley, currently working on a degree in Electrical Engineering/Computer Sciences and Business Administration. Experienced in CSX, productivity management, and chatbot implementation.