Most start-ups are thrifty with their marketing budget. With so many digital channels, offline-online hybrids and a multitude of devices in consumers’ hands, you’re probably wondering how you’re going to effectively reach, engage and convert new customers without that 'big guy' budget.
While most start-ups (including the one I work with, DesignCrowd.com.au) are trying to do more with less, it’s not just the little guys taking advantage of ‘lean marketing’ and turning to new approaches, like online crowdsourcing. Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd crowdsourced a T-shirt design for the 2013 election campaign and Domino’s Australia crowdsourced a $1,000 pizza box cover design from its Facebook community.
So, whether you’re just at the idea phase, you’ve just launched or you’re an established business, it doesn't hurt to explore some simple ideas. Here’s what DesignCrowd.com.au has road tested, and what you can do:
Build your own list and interact with it
Your customers are your business partners and your best marketing tool. Harnessing the power to interact with them will help you build one mean marketing machine. Marketing is like being in a relationship, and you don’t need a big budget to start and grow a thriving romance with your customers.
At DesignCrowd.com.au, when a designer or company signs up to our marketplace, they receive a welcome email from our CEO and founder, Alec Lynch. We even send ‘thank you’ cards to our customers, designers and other stakeholders. A DesignCrowd.com.au customer posted about the great impression this created on her blog. Back that up with fanatical customer service, and your customers will love you.
To find out more about a company, person, idea, job, location, or anything else for that matter, the first thing we do is jump online. Social media platforms can connect you with billions of potential customers. How many highway billboards can do that?
It’s in our nature to socialise and share ideas with each other. We live in the age of the network economy where connections amplify success.
Leave your desk
Local meet-ups (check out Meetup.com), industry conferences, and networking events (try social conference directory, Lanyrd) are some places senior executives of a business need to think about attending and participating to get their public profile out there.
Know your users
Once you have them in reach, use free tools like Google Forms, Wufoo or Survey Monkey to create a survey you can share with your users. If you want Google’s reach, try Google Consumer Insights, a new tool that distributes your survey across Google’s publisher networks to millions of users. You only pay Google for the number of responses and you can even set a maximum number of submissions.
A good way to find out what keywords are trending in your space is through Google’s free keyword search tool.
Become a data ninja
Famous adman David Ogilvy once said: “Never stop testing and your advertising will never stop improving.”
The same is true for websites. If you want to improve your conversion rate, reduce your cost per acquisition, improve site indexing, or unlock more value by understanding how your customers use your site, get on the web tools bandwagon.
A/B testing: Start testing the conversion performance of your landing page design to unlock more value. We suggest Optimizely.
Google’s Webmaster: Create a sitemap to get your site indexed and appear on search engines.
Google Analytics: Monitor your site’s visitor traffic and behaviour so you can track your sales funnel.
SEM and remarketing: If you’re investing in cost effective channels to drive clicks, make sure your ‘squeeze’ pages are in sync with the copy and design elements in your display ad on Facebook or text ad on Google. That way you present a consistent message which will increase the chance of users taking action.
Qualaroo, Web Engage or Effective Measure: Track audience behaviour through user exit surveys to improve on-site user engagement and conversion in real-time.
HubSpot: Can do an SEO health check on your site, benchmarking you against millions of site reviews and recommending areas for improvement.
Be an expert in your niche
Who are the influential thought-leaders in your niche? You should consider how you can get amongst them.
If you have an opinion, tell it, don’t wait to have a PR budget. Offer insight or guest editorial to bloggers, journalists and news sites.
Cultivating social proof
The phrase ‘social proof’ was coined by Robert Cialdini (professor of marketing and psychology at Arizona State University) as a way of explaining the ‘herd’ phenomenon online.
Amazon, the ecommerce behemoth, was one of the first (and still a leading example) of how to cultivate social proof for your product or service. Think of pop-up customer reviews, ratings and testimonials that appear across product pages and influence what you choose to buy.
As Richard Branson says: "You can create a business, choose a name, but unless people know about it you're not going to sell any products."
Josephine Sabin is marketing manager for Australian-based start-up DesignCrowd.com.au.
Please login with linkedin to comment
me&u, Australia’s first and leading mobile ordering and payment platform, has appointed Clementine Churchill as Head of Marketing as they continue to drive rapid growth and expansion in Australia and new international markets. A highly experienced marketing leader and recognised industry thought leader, Churchill joins me&u from My Muscle Chef, one of Australia’s top rated […]
MILO is on the search for Australia’s best made MILO, calling on fans to share their creations for the chance to win #TheMILOCup, via Ogilvy Sydney. This integrated campaign follows on from the success of last year’s ‘Hot v Cold’ campaign, which encouraged Aussies to settle the debate on whether MILO is best enjoyed hot […]
New research from Getty Images, a world leader in visual communications, has found that LGBTQ+ representation in ANZ remains low and stereotypical. It’s 2021 – this needs to change – especially in marketing and advertising. In partnership with GLAAD, the LGBTQ+ media advocacy organisation, Getty Images has launched a full-spectrum Guidebook in direct response to […]
Natural historian Sir David Attenborough is one of the most commanding and respected storytellers in the world and now the iconic series, David Attenborough Life Stories, is available on LiSTNR as part of SCA’s recently announced partnership with the BBC. David Attenborough Life Stories is a series of talks on the natural histories of creatures and […]
Menulog has doubled down on its marketing support for restaurant partners, with the promotion of Senior Marketing Manager, Rami Tamer, to a newly created role of ‘Head of Partner Marketing’, as well as the promotion of former-Blue 449 Performance Manager, Jaryd Buggins. In the new Head of Partner Marketing role, Rami will lead a team […]
ARN has announced Barry Drinkwater will be handing over his content director reins at 97.3FM and 4KQ to respected radio executive, Alisson Longhurst. Drinkwater has had a stellar career in radio spanning more than four decades, and was acknowledged as one of Australia’s Top 20 Content Directors by Radio Today in 2020. He began his radio career […]
Australia’s largest social enterprise is turning 25. On the anniversary of Australia’s first Big Issue magazine being sold on the steps of Melbourne’s Flinders Street Station in June 1996, Town Square has created a campaign to mark the occasion. 25 Years Big is a celebratory statement of pride, rendered in the iconic Big Issue logo […]
The Australian commercial radio industry has joined a global working group of broadcasters, carmakers and tech experts collaborating on the innovation of radio in Android Automotive. Android Automotive is Google’s infotainment operating system which is being built into new connected cars. Industry body Commercial Radio Australia is part of the working group, led by the […]
For the third consecutive year, Triple M’s No Talk Day will return on Thursday July 1 to raise awareness around men’s mental health and encourage courageous conversations on Triple M’s 45 stations across the country with support from partner Beyond Blue. From 6:00am – 6:00pm on July 1, Triple M is encouraging listeners to clear […]
Consumer shifts in how and where people buy products evolved significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic, creating new opportunities for retailers to use new channels, fulfilment strategies and payment options, according to the results of a new survey out today from BigCommerce and PayPal. While a majority of the 3,000 consumers surveyed from the United States, United Kingdom […]
Here is EVERYTHING you need to know about contextual advertising bar the curling wand and the hot pink leg warmers.
The brainchild of co-founders Gina Williams-Folau (main photo) and Greer Bland, the talent agency Liquorice was born out of a desire to make things easier for brand managers. Liquorice offers social talent for brands wanting to hit the sweet spot with Kiwi audiences. Launching with a roster of big names on board including Millie Elder-Holmes, Athena […]