InnMid organised an online workshop covering an important topic for all startups - marketing. As a special guest we invited one of Europe's recognised experts in strategic and revenue marketing Zineb Layachi.

It was an amazing interactive online consulting session, where the invited marketing expert answered the questions of startup founders and advised them on how to solve the particular problems they face in their real business life.

Zineb Layachi is a CMO advisor for many tech startups, driving direct sales and growing revenues through marketing techniques. She is also a co-founder of PitchSlap, a weekly startup pitching show.

We want to recap the most insightful parts of the workshop, starting with 5 essential marketing tips for tech startups based on personal trial and error experience:

1. Always look for the feedback!

Your customers, just as you, have constant conversations in their heads. Your goal is to join into that conversation, naturally. Don’t interrupt their trail of thought with marketing and business jargon they wouldn’t fully understand, instead talk to your customers and most importantly listen, their feedback is priceless!

2. Deliberately position your product!

Whenever a new product launches, there is always default positioning (an e-mail service presents itself as such). But that is not an obligatory direction for it to move! Think about the possibilities for your tech product or service to be something different. In the end, you e-mail service may become a chat app, or something completely new. But keep in mind that the new positioning for your startup must fit and be done deliberately!

3. HEADLINES ARE EVERYTHING!

Unless your headline is worth someone's time, nobody will click on it and your content will not be consumed. Your headline is the first thing your consumers are gonna see and it’s job is to make them read the second! Remember that people who visit your content are just like you and I, so it is important to think about what kind of headline would be worth your time!

4. Ditch the MQL mindset!

The tendency to think of large amounts of leads per low cost as the most important part of marketing is an erroneous mindset, it does not help your product. Nowadays, your intent in marketing is of utmost importance! You should centralise your attention on cost per acquisition.

5. Stop making content that nobody will consume!

Think about where you are coming from when you create your content? Where do you get your inspiration? Always dig deeper. You can find “gold” anywhere where there is a discussion, for example: comments!

But let's switch to real-life cases below!

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During the workshop we went through the questions of startup founders, exploring their business cases and identifying what practical actions can help them solve their problems and challenges with marketing.

“Could we market our product before it’s completely ready and what are the risks?” - question from Anis Bey, founder of Kestya

Advice:

You should market the product as early as possible. But you also need to consider some specific things. People don’t need just something incomplete: this product should also solve a problem. Here is a simple example: your aim is to sell cakes but you should start with complete cupcakes.

“How to get started? Where to find the audience and how much to spend on the marketing budget?” - question from Sano Musab Hidjazi, founder of It’s Prodigy

Advice:

First, try to answer the question: “who are you selling to?”. This answer gives you information about where to look for your audience and where to promote the product.  

After clarifying this part, go to the channels used by your target audience: whether it is facebook groups, subreddits or special professional forums. Start interacting with them and getting to know your customers better, as well as creating awareness about your product, promoting it in these channels.

Innovative startups very often face misunderstanding from customers due to a very complex explanation of their product or technology features. In this case Zineb recommends dedicating a small budget for ads (for example, Google ads) and analyzing the clicks. This way you will get 7-8 words that describe your solution clearly for your customers.

Watch the full workshop recording to learn about other cases and solutions, as well as useful tips on what email headlines are the most successful, how to market to B2B audience and etc.

>> Struggling with sales? Watch the webinar about sales in startups here<<


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