Not very long ago starting up a business was a complicated and cumbersome affair. It was the domain of a privileged few who had deep pockets or were inherent risk takers. Technology and modern economy have changed the scene drastically. Today, opening a new company is easy as long as you have a clear roadmap. The seed capital needed to start a business is low which has resulted in start-ups mushrooming at an unprecedented pace everywhere.
But… starting up is just a part of the story; surviving is another
Reports suggest that nine out of ten start-ups fail. Most start-ups don’t even see the light of day and a vast majority of them vanish unceremoniously. The tiny percentage of survivors who are able to build something even close to a legacy, have many factors contributing to their survival like focussing on innovation, a scalable business idea and so on. One of the key factors however is building a strong brand.
This brings us to our next question.
How does a start-up with a shoestring budget and lack of resources invest in building a brand?
The answer lies in our favourite place these days — social media! All you need is a well-crafted social media strategy. Let me tell you why!
A well thought out social media strategy on platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest can be ideal for introducing and communicating one’s brand organically. Not only does it create visibility for the brand to attract potential investors, but also helps map its target audience better.
A recent survey has shown that 73% of marketers say social media is effective for their business.
The 101 of a start-up’s social media strategy
Strategize your SM engagement by understanding your target audience
Developing a clear understanding of your social media target audience may be the most important thing you do as a social media marketer. Your target audience moulds all elements of your social media strategy.
As you develop your target audience, don’t be afraid to get highly specific. SM audience research isn’t complicated. It’s mainly about narrowing your focus while expanding your reach.
Remember: You can sell to everyone, but you can’t target everyone with singular content.
Optimise your content and avoid carpet-bombing
Ask yourself some simple questions: What content will my audience relate to? What tone or voice should I use?
Categorise your audience: Which kind of audience will use what platform.
Understand each platform: Despite sharing common traits, each social media platform has its own voice and audience.
Once you have a good understanding of your audience, it’s easier to be strategic and clear about the purpose behind your communications, the key messages you need to deliver, and the channels that will get your message across.
Don’t adopt a carpet-bombing strategy; spreading the same marketing messages across as many platforms weakens the brand’s messaging. Just talking about your product and its features won’t add value. You must engage them in a story and tell them how you identified the gap and what are you doing to solve the problem. The key is authenticity. Post, comment, share, add videos, use graphics, like, respond, and add photos to bring value to your customers.
Build a community
The benefits are twofold:
1. You get invaluable insights that you can use to improve your business.
2. Your customer feels that you value their opinion, increasing the mutual trust and respect.
An online community is a great way to establish brand differentiation from your competitors. Focusing on the perceived value for your customers will help you stand out from the crowd. Take the time to figure out how you are different than your competitors and use that to create value for the customer.
You need to constantly find ways to create new and engaging content to spark discussion and positive experiences with your brand.
Social media is a crucial part of your business marketing, but it doesn’t have to be stressful to manage. Bottom line is to give your brand a personality. Stand out in the market by leveraging social media. In a market which is saturated with start-ups, it can be a lifeline.
To know about how to ignite your start-up with effective communication, check out our annual report:
SPAG's Annual Outlook Report 2020 is developed in consultation with leading experts like KPMG, APACMed which dive into…