When creating an internet start-up, many business owners start marketing right away, and that’s a good idea. But when you start marketing, make sure you have a goal in mind. Rapid-fire marketing is not only ineffective, but it will waste a lot of your precious time and money in the process. You can market aspects of your business later, but when you start out, you want people to know you’re there and, briefly, what you do. Awareness is the key, and here are some tips to help you become more visible.
Everyone loves to get something for free, particularly if it’s useful. Giving away promotional items branded with your logo, business name, slogan, and website and/or phone number can be highly effective in spreading the word that you’re in business, and it can help you gain some new customers, too. Try giving away items like pens, stress balls, flash light key chains, and other things that people will use. Check out these promo products for more examples.
If your industry has art, craft, or trade shows, consider purchasing a booth and either selling your product or service there, or simply handing out information. How you approach the show depends on your industry, but making a presence there will certainly make others aware of your business. While trade shows are in-person events, even online companies can benefit from attending them. A simple internet search for your industry name followed by “trade show” will give you much of the information you’ll need (i.e. engineering trade shows).
Whether your target audience is composed of businesses or consumers, direct marketing can help you gain visibility. Postcards, flyers, information sheets, and brochures are great ways to reach your target market and let them know you’re there. This route is particularly helpful for the local marketplace. By letting those in your community know you exist, you’ll foster a relationship with many of your soon-to-be clients and customers. Even though your business may be online, relationships are often formed in the community, and starting your awareness campaign there can help your business name spread quickly.
When it comes to start-up success, being able to gain visibility should be the first step in your marketing process. This effort must be consistent, so that others are always aware of your presence. Eventually, you can start marketing about the specifics of your business, but starting generally will get the attention of your target market. Once you have that attention, you can start to fully explain your business and what you do.