Online Resources for Creating a Startup Marketing Plan

by Jake Rocheleau

March 22, 2013 in Resources

After brainstorming your brand new idea it is time to put this company into action. The tech industry loves to refer to these new innovative business ideas as “startups” when they are in a heavy growth phase. Marketing is a huge proponent to the success of any startup, regardless of the idea or market base.

startups marketing plan promotional - preview photo

That is why I have put together just a few resources for efficient online marketing. You may be surprised at the power of companies to help with promotional tools. It is not easy to find your proper demographics in the large sea of our World Wide Web. It will very likely require time and effort looking through the alternatives. But I do hope my suggestions will provide a nice starting point for developers and founders alike.

Product Giveaways

You need to consider branding and promotional items at some point. Hosting a small giveaway contest on your company blog is sure to drum up attention from early adopters. The products you are giving away can be anything from shirts, mugs, cup holders, caps, plushies, really anything. It should be a product which your users will enjoy and reminds them of your company.

2013 blue cotton branding print merchandise ecommerce

I generally recommend BlueCotton as their services are quick, easy to understand, and not too expensive. Ordering online can be an easier solution when you consider the location of smaller remote companies. Plus their online design studio is perfect for graphics designers who already have logo customizations ready to be published.

Giveaways require a bit of time and building up attention from other fans. You need to get links out there to let people know your startup is running a cute promotional. After some time you will likely witness a large increase in visitor traffic, plus search engine traffic as your website begins ranking within Google.

Digital Web Templates

I have always been surprised at the level of quality and control among website template retailers. There are not very many who stay online for long, and most have adapted into WordPress or Joomla! theme designs. However, generic landing pages and simple HTML/CSS/JS templates are still great resources to have saved in your external HDD.

online website templates ecommerce templatemonster

My personal favorite retailer is still Template Monster for a number of reasons. Their prices are affordable, the templates are coded and offer PSD resources, plus the library is very expansive. Template Monster has begun listing other similar themes with responsive design, Twitter Bootstrap compatibility, infographics, Flash banners, and lots of other media content.

It might also be worth investing in a smaller web template for your company’s theme. if the website needs an update or if any sister websites need a template this is the place to be. I have been pleasantly surprised with Template Monster’s improved quality over recent years.

Retailer Advertising

These days I cannot share enough praise about BuySellAds. Their company has been online for years and it has grown significantly to include a large number of big-name websites. BSA handles online advertising where publishers just list their site in the directory. Then advertisers will buy pre-selected spots on the website and money is transferred between accounts.

company marketing buy sell ads

Their privacy policy and terms of use provide a clearer picture of the operation. And this is why it is so reasonable to go through a proxy-style service for managing advertising. BSA will ensure that your payments come in on time and from the correct advertisers. Plus you do not need to worry about replacing ad codes since everything is handled dynamically via JavaScript.

On the flip side, startups who need to bring in traffic should be searching through existing websites for possible deals. I have seen plenty of great website listings with open ad slots running very affordable prices.

Finding the Right Talent

Online resources for scouting developers is tough. Marketing will eventually net you some interested people but it is not easy gauging their work quality. I have really enjoyed checking out Whitetruffle as a service for developers & designers looking for jobs.

Startups recruiting developers html5 css3 php WhiteTruffle.com

Newer startup launches should check out their website and determine if this is a useful resource. The company provides much higher quality competition than freelancers at Odesk or another outsourcing firm. Plus you can learn a lot from their other clients who have been working with Whitetruffle ever since they launched. It will not provide easy marketing, but the quality of users is much better than what you will find on similar hiring websites.

Final Thoughts

Marketing a startup is going to require time and lots of patience. You cannot expect to see results within the first few weeks, or even within the first few months. The greatest companies require years to build up steady yet secure growth via targeted content creation, marketing, and viral promotions.

Be sure and utilize some of these tools for your own company’s growth. It will never be easy to launch a company online and scale within a matter of weeks. Startup founders should always consider the alternatives as strange as they may sound. But if you have similar ideas for marketing potential feel free to share with us in the discussion area below.

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About Jake Rocheleau

Jake is a digital researcher and writer on many popular design magazines. He frequently writes on topics including web design, user experience, mobile apps, and project management. You can find him all throughout Google and tweeting @jakerocheleau. Connect with Jake on google+

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