We believe that digital marketing can help any business in any industry! While paying for digital marketing services is an expense, it’s also an investment that can help your company to grow and grow and grow.
We also understand that sometimes it can be a bit of a tough (and expensive) pill to swallow. Knowing where to start, how to start, when to start, how much to pay, etc., etc.
All great questions!
In this article, I’ll provide an answer for when you should start, as well as a little bit of why you should start, followed by a few suggestions of what to start with and how.
When Should Your Startup Start Digital Marketing?
The best answer for when you should start: NOW!
Or, as our team members like to say, it’s like planting a tree. The best time to do it was twenty years ago; the second-best time is now.
Regardless of where your company is at in its life, you should start some digital marketing strategies. Since the earliest stage that a company can really be in would be a startup, we’re going to look into that stage a little bit deeper to see why it’s a good reason to start with digital marketing as early as possible.
These reasons and more will still apply at any stage of a company’s life beyond this point, so if you’re not in the startup stage, then you should be looking at digital marketing even more intently.
Specifically though, if you’re the owner of a startup company, you should definitely look into digital marketing services. There are many benefits to using a digital marketing service while your company is still young.
Reach a Wider Audience
For one, digital marketing can help you reach a wider audience than traditional marketing methods. This is especially important in the early days of your company, when you’re trying to build up a customer base.
Your digital presence is more important today than it ever has been before; an estimated 1 out of every 5 dollars spent today is spent online! Where a billboard might reach thousands of people, digital marketing has the potential to reach hundreds of thousands or millions of people. Your audience can be the entire world. There are really no limits! And if you’re neglecting your online audience, you’re not reaching a huge chunk of your potential clients and customers.
Cost-Effective Solution to Marketing and Brand Awareness
Digital marketing can also be more cost-effective than traditional marketing, so it’s a great way to stretch your budget in those early days. You can get some really great digital marketing services at a decent price that isn’t going to bankrupt your company.
These services are also really easy to outsource when you’re just starting out and can’t hire a full-time marketing staff. This can bring in some major cost savings to your fledgling company!
Of course, any type of marketing will still be an expense. If you’re just starting out, you’re likely questioning whether you can afford digital marketing. But a better question is, can you afford not to invest in it? Your competitors are almost certainly doing so; the leading companies and brands in your field definitely are. If you want to get where they are, you need to start NOW.
Digital marketing strategies like SEO compound over time—the longer you’ve been around and optimizing your online marketing efforts, the more authority search engines like Google will give your site, and the more likely you’ll be to rank. If you wait around to get your digital marketing going, it will be even harder to catch up to where industry leaders already are.
Ok, now you’ve seen some of the benefits, where do you begin?
Step 1: Outsource Your Digital Marketing
First off, like I mentioned above, I would recommend that you start by outsourcing this service to an agency. You can get a taste for a number of different services at a fraction of the cost and almost none of the commitment that comes with hiring an in-house person.
There are many different types of digital marketing services you can choose from, but some of the most effective for startups include search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, and social media marketing.
SEO Services for Startups
Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, can help you get your website ranked higher in search engine results, making it more likely that potential customers will find you. Every company should be engaging in some form of SEO.
The dream for every company is to get high-quality inbound leads, without having to pay for ads or make cold calls. When SEO is done right, it sets you up to get found and potentially get leads and sales online without having to continually pay for ads or reach out to potential customers.
But SEO doesn’t give you leads immediately. Especially for startups without an established website with a high domain authority, search engine optimization is a gradual process that can grow exponentially over time. If you go into SEO with the mindset that it will get you immediate results, you’ll likely be disappointed; if you go in with the mindset of starting the right steps now so that you’ll be ranking highly and getting web traffic and leads down the road after your foundation has been laid, you’re on the right track!
It is a long-term growth strategy, but that means it’s necessary to get SEO going as early as you possibly can. After all, if you don’t start SEO early, your competitors who DID start early will be outranking you, and in a few years when you want to be where they’re at, you’ll be playing major catch-up to their head start. Check out this article to learn more about this service and gain insight into its pricing.
Content Marketing for Startups
Content marketing can help you create valuable content that will attract leads and build trust with your audience. This is also a great way to help with your overall SEO strategy. It helps in a bunch of ways and can be surprisingly affordable.
You may have thought, “My business doesn’t need a blog. Who would even read it?” But the truth is, any industry that has customers has customers asking questions online! If you get blog content on your website that answers your customers’ questions and gives valuable information about the goods and services they’re looking for, that can help interested people find you faster, as well as start to build your website’s authority and your brand awareness.
Content marketing can include the text for blogs, service pages, white papers, and more that can be used to educate potential customers, get keywords onto your website that people are searching for, and even help with your sales process by explaining how your business works and benefits of what you offer.
Social Media Marketing for Startups
Social media marketing can help you connect with potential customers and create a community around your brand. Depending on your industry, social media marketing may or may not be your best strategy—you also want to be choosy with the platforms you’re using, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter, as some will be much more effective than others depending on your industry and target audience.
I suggest that you chat with a professional on this one to make sure your efforts are going in the right direction, but this can be a very successful way for your company’s brand to get out into the world.
Digital marketing is an essential tool for any startup company. If you’re not using digital marketing to promote your business, you’re missing out on a great opportunity to reach more customers and grow your business.
If you’re ready to get started with digital marketing, contact a reputable marketing agency like Lemonade Stand. We specialize in all forms of digital marketing and have helped startups grow their businesses through effective digital marketing. Contact us today to learn more about our services, what digital marketing strategy is right for your startup, and how we can help you reach your business goals.