Startup Marketing Can Make Your Brand a Household Name

    3 minutes read
    John - 25.04.2016
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    We love hearing success stories, especially when it comes to startup marketing (but then, we're probably biased).

    As an experienced inbound marketing agency, we’ve worked with brands from all backgrounds to deliver bespoke inbound strategies across a variety of channels to help them better identify and attract the people who matter most to their growth ambitions. Want more information check out our blog “Lessons from an inbound marketing agency”.

    Startups and SMEs are the lifeblood of the UK as we’ve mentioned before, and the north of England is enjoying a lot of success at the moment. ‘Northern Powerhouse’ or not, a number of key cities are fast becoming innovation centres. This is what our economy’s all about. Though we aren’t as vocal or patriotic about individual success as the US, the UK is nevertheless thriving as a place where small businesses can open their doors and have a shot at the big time.

    Sheffield is a prime example for startup success, with the city having an impressive 42 per cent survival rate. While Sheffield is excelling in technology enterprise, the creative and digital sector housed in Liverpool's Baltic Triangle area isn’t far off becoming a £1 billion industry for the region.

    Stats, stats, lovely stats. Here’s another one: UK startup survival rates are the highest they’ve been in three years, according to the biannual Barclays and Business Growth Fund (BGF) Entrepreneurs Index.

    All well and good for Blighty as a whole, but let’s be practical. These startups don’t want to stay small forever. They want to grow and take on the world. National statistics are fantastic, but let’s take a look at some individual companies that blossomed thanks to creative startup marketing.

    The Power of Creative Startup Marketing

    Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Sky, Cadbury… No, not our Saturday night in; these are instantly recognisable brands, whose products you can immediately visualise as soon as you hear their names.

    These brands didn’t just appear overnight. They were small businesses once. Ideas that became global household names, thanks to their creators finding a niche and exploiting it effectively with startup marketing, before going on to bigger things.

    They’re pretty old and established brand names, though, so their initial marketing strategy was likely a lot different from the inbound model we’d suggest using today. With the right plan in place, startups are now able to instantly target a specific market and grow their business quickly with biddable media, while laying foundations to attract more natural inbound leads in the long-term.

    Quipper is one business that has done just that. The education software was created in the UK, and provides a cloud-based learning platform that connects students and teachers alike. Think of it as an all-in-one content solution, dedicated to helping schools become paperless and offering thousands of educational courses.

    Quipper has really taken off in Asian markets, and was eventually purchased by Japanese firm Recruit for $39 million. Key to its expansion and increased visibility was  clever approach to startup marketing. The company developed localised content for its target markets, and targeted teachers with a bottom-up approach. By offering individuals a tailored solution for their workplace problems, Quipper was able to expand into niche international territories and attract investment.

    Startup Marketing that Solves People’s Problems

    Now, how about a real household name? Uber is one company that has enjoyed meteoric growth since it was founded in 2009, and is now a viable alternative to taxi services across the globe.

    How did Uber go from small company to being valued at over $50 billion? Well, the product helps. Uber’s overall experience redefines the car service experience, and word of mouth was a key driver for its initial growth. Social media helped that spread, while lucrative driver incentives generated leads and brought new potential drivers on board.

    Uber’s use of technology was essential to its success. Social media campaigns with referral offers for free rides helped the phenomenon to catch fire, and partnering with PayPal helped as did other smartphone-based strategies. This was complemented by a strong outreach strategy to garner celebrity influencers and attract endorsements.

    Our Own Startup Marketing Strategy

    Closer to home, one of our own clients, Membr, is currently expanding into international territories including Europe, the US, Australia and Malaysia. This is in part thanks to a startup marketing campaign which is helping the company to achieve global ambitions with its cloud-based gym management software.

    Membr’s technology connects gyms and personal trainers with their clients online, and makes it easy to construct exercise plans, track overall health and provide various other services. Inbound marketing is helping Membr go from a local startup to a seriously competitive service in the growing market of fitness technology.

    Since Membr has already been introduced across some of the UK’s leading gym chains, we’ve created an inbound plan that will allow Membr to specifically target fitness fans overseas. This builds substantially on the 500,000 people that already use their system. Persona targeting has been key for Membr’s strategy, as has using biddable media to attract fitness professionals and enthusiasts in new regions.

    As an experienced inbound marketing agency, we’ve worked with brands from all backgrounds to deliver bespoke inbound strategies across a variety of channels to help them better identify and attract the people who matter most to their growth ambitions. Want more information check out our blog “Lessons from an inbound marketing agency”.

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