You’ve taken the plunge and finally started your own business after months and years of telling anyone who would listen to you about that brilliant idea. Now it’s time to put your money where your mouth is and prove that your idea works.
That being said, first you need people to hear about you. While you might think that your idea alone is enough for would-be customers to fall over themselves for you, in reality, it isn’t. Not even close.
You have to put your name out there and compete with other, more established brands for a share of the market. Marketing is important and functioning website is key. Here is our digital advice that all new start-ups should listen to if they are to be successful.
Consider the User Experience
Forget about all of your preconceptions about how your website should look and work, and start to consider how it needs to look and the functions that you need. That all-singing-all-dancing Flash video may look impressive, but when it doesn’t load properly on mobile screen and seriously slows down your website, it isn’t doing you any favours.
All around the world, in cities such as Bucharest, Amsterdam and Peterborough, start-ups are picking apart web design ideas in order to gain an advantage over their competitors. For the main part, the website serves as the first contact that you have with potential customers. It must tell the user who you are, what you do and why they need your product/service – all within the first few seconds of landing on the page.
Tell the World
Once you have the website, now is the time to market your brand. Marketing is a funny sector with blurred lines and no one-size-fits-all-guaranteed-to-succeed method. First and foremost, work out who you are trying to sell your brand to, and consider the issues that are important to them.
Think about your target audiences:
- Habits (when are they most likely to use the internet)
- Average earnings
- Political stance
- Pains (and the solution you offer)
Once you have the answer to all of the above, you are ready to reach out to your audience. Social media is a fine tool, enabling businesses to engage with their customers on issues outside of their usual realm.
Don’t expect customers to come to you – that means don’t post solely on your business because, honestly, no one cares apart from you. Post about relevant issues that your target audience cares about. Start the conversation, invoke a reaction, interact and gently lead them towards your website – by this point they are familiar with what you offer, making them more likely to buy from you.
Search Engine Optimisation
If you combine each of our opening two pieces of advice, you end up with Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) which, depending on your level of understanding, is either a dirty word or a phrase that represents an opportunity. There is no concrete right way to go about SEO, but there are plenty of ‘wrong’ ways in which to approach SEO.
Without getting into all of the finer details, optimising your website helps to manoeuvre your website up the search rankings and, thus, appear on Google when someone actively searches for services that you offer. As a start-up, you will likely be rushed off of your feet with other business so, even if you are familiar with SEO, we strongly recommend calling on the services of a digital agency with the know-how and technology at their disposal.
With a separate team working on your marketing and tending to your website, you are freed up to actually run your business and making it a success. Play to your strengths and you may just stand a chance at making it big.