It’s easy to get all worked up about startup marketing costs. Your business is brand new, your team is fresh as a daisy and your expenses are already, somehow, mounting steadily. It’s a tough world out there! However, we’re still firm believers that startup marketing is an essential requirement – and in many cases, it pays to get professional help.

The risks of Brexit

In a recent article, StartupSmart addressed several factors that could impact on UK startups in the wake of Brexit:

  1. Access to funding - Investors aren’t big fans of uncertainty. Until the UK and EU finalise negotiations, there may be less willingness to invest. Greater uncertainty implies greater risk, and no one wants to put capital at risk. Since the referendum, changing currency values have also added another layer of uncertainty.
  2. Access to talent - Previously, the UK has benefitted from the free movement of workers within the EU. Startups have been able to attract well educated and experienced employees, who found it simple to live and work in the UK. Now, if immigrating to the UK is made more difficult, it could affect the job market, with fewer candidates applying for UK jobs. However, UK has not yet laid out any regulations, so it’s unknown how much of an issue this will be.
  3. Access to other markets – If the UK does lose access to the single market, we may be more at risk from regulatory competition from other markets. Other EU countries may be able to offer lower taxes or better regulations. Similarly, the single market has allowed UK companies to trade with the EU with minimal trade barriers. Leaving the EU may threaten ease of exporting for startups and established companies alike.

Benefits of Britain

Despite all this, we don’t think it’s time to panic just yet. During recent years, the UK has enjoyed a very healthy startup scene. This would suggest that pre-Brexit, we benefitted from major advantages over EU competitor markets.

For instance, the UK has well-established legislation surrounding the starting and funding of small businesses. The UK has also consistently scored highly in terms of judicial quality, we have effective regulatory agencies and contract enforcement, and benefit from modern contract and commercial law.

What’s more, the UK could mitigate Brexit worries with new research and development, tax initiatives and startup incentives. In fact, UK startups already receive significantly more funding from our government than US startups enjoy across the pond. Ultimately, the UK still has the opportunity to encourage a healthy startup environment in its new regulatory landscape.

According to The Global Accelerator Report 2015 from Gust and Fundacity, UK start-up accelerator programmes invested $9.9m in businesses last year, outperforming European neighbours. During the same year, a total $41m was invested by 113 European accelerators in 2,574 start-ups. UK accelerator schemes helped to develop 1,124 start-ups, coming second globally only to US programmes which accelerated 2,522 start-ups.

So, once your startup secures funding – where do you spend it?

How to handle your startup marketing costs

Any business will tell you that starting up is rarely easy. If you have limited investment funds and investors eager to see results, it might just seem like startup marketing costs too much.

However, the importance of brand awareness and lead generation can’t be overstated. As Gabriel Weinberg, CEO & Founder DuckDuckGo, says, “most startups don’t fail at building a product, they fail at acquiring customers.” Unfortunately, however fantastic your product is, ‘build it and they will come’ just isn’t a solid business proposition.

Startups often fail due to some weakness in design or strategy, but even if development all goes swimmingly you aren’t always safe. Gaining traction in the market is difficult for any newcomer, especially startups dealing with budget constraints and zero brand awareness. Brexit or no Brexit, marketing is essential to the health of your startup.

As a Manchester startup marketing agency, we know the struggle. We’re approaching our first birthday as a company, and we’ve already learned so much about being a UK startup (and a northern startup, that’s a title we’re very proud of too!)

The times are changing, outbound is outdated and in some cases, can be potentially dangerous for your brand financially and in a reputational sense. Big fines are being handed out to serial data offenders. With inbound you can avoid this and get the best from your leads so read our blog “How to create Inbound Strategy Masterclass” for more information.

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