Digital marketing for startups:
We are familiar with the current definition of start ups.
According to Steve Blank, “a startup is an organization formed to search for a repeatable and scalable business model”
We know that to reduce the failure rate in start ups, we must test our hypothesis before developing a product ( i.e., before execution ). In order to test our hypothesis, we can use a tool called Business Model Canvas (BMC). Usually, the first step is writing the hypothesis on the BMC and then starting the customer development process.
Now that we have an idea of what a start-up is and how we can start, let’s find the position of a start up in the product life cycle diagram.
As you can see in our figure, the green circle represents the place where most start-ups begin. In this place, start ups need to convince Innovators that this product can be valuable to them. If start ups can`t convince innovators, they can hardly pass the chasm, which is the gap between early adopters and early majority. In this case, the failure rate is very high. On the other hand, if a start up passes the chasm, the success rate increases (Please note that this chasm has a direct relationship with different market types. A chasm is wider for a new market while it is more narrow for an existing market).
Now the question is: where does digital marketing fit in all of this?
One of the most important tasks of digital marketing is boosting the value generated by a business model canvas. In other words, we need an established business model to have confidence that there are customers for our proposed value. We can then say that there is a market fit and start to use digital marketing to boost the value proposed in the business model. In this case, digital marketing can accelerate the progress of the product life cycle since customers already exist.
Based on all of the above information, it might seem that digital marketing is only useful when there is an established business model.
However, there is still a chance for digital marketers to use their tools and techniques to help start ups in testing their hypothesis. One common scenario in start ups is that start ups might not be sure who their customers are. Is the product going to b used by students or teachers, parents or children, employees or managers?
This is a good example of where digital marketing can be helpful. By designing a digital marketing campaign on social media which is tied to a landing page, you can invite the potential customers to subscribe.
This simple strategy can help you to assess your hypothesis and accelerate the customer development process.
Therefore, digital marketing can help both established businesses and start ups.
When it comes to established businesses, digital marketing can help boost the value proposed on the business model.
When it comes to startups, digital marketing can help to accelerate the customer development process by testing and reducing the uncertainty of your hypotheses.
One of the tools that can help digital marketers in the beginning of their digital marketing campaign is the digital marketing canvas (DMC). We hope you find DMC easy to use.