Follow These 7 Paid Marketing Steps to Fuel Your Startup’s Growth

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There are a lot of startup marketing that you should do for free, such as creating brands on social media, getting traffic to your website through organic search, media coverage, getting traffic. reviews online on major platforms and just talk to as many customers as you can.

Once you’ve done that and made these programs work smoothly, it’s time to consider paid marketing. Here are seven options you can put on top of each other to drive the growth of your business.

1. Use paid social media to create interest

Unless you’re into retail or consumer products, you won’t get many sales directly from social media. This is not how most people buy. So instead of trying to close, try to create interest.

Create a professional 10-30 second video, high quality image resources, and useful text posts. Promote content and ads that educate viewers about the problem you’re solving and how your product or service works. Make them want more: to click on your profile or to search on Google. Use social media to create interest that you can then capture on your website and other channels.

2. Invest in the search for payment for demand from the bottom of the funnel and the contents of the top of the funnel

People are actively looking for solutions to their problems. Some of these searches are intended for purchase (“emergency air conditioning service”) and some are simply informative (“why my air conditioning doesn’t cool down”). It’s worth paying for search ads on Google and Bing for both.

Purchases with intent to purchase should drive traffic to your homepage or product landing page. Informational searches should drive traffic to your content, such as a blog or YouTube video, where you answer their questions.

Targeting information searches is often (though not always) a cheaper option for generating qualified contacts as well. It’s easy enough to teach people how to solve their problems and then ask them, “Do you want us to do it for you? Send us a text message or call us today.”

Related: 5 Steps to Creating Successful Marketing Campaigns

3. Attend trade fairs aimed at starting conversations

Trade shows bring together hundreds or thousands of potential customers under one roof, and you can talk to any of them. But exposing is expensive. For shows you haven’t been to before, pay one or two people to attend. Start conversations with as many attendees and salespeople as you can. Look for sales opportunities and ask them about their favorite industry shows to attend.

If you can close deals, great. If you discover other important shows, great too. Use it as a cheap experiment to find out where to spend your time and more money. See point # 5 below.

4. Produce high quality video ads (commercials)

Videos can be used effectively through a variety of channels, including face-to-face events. This makes them incredibly valuable and also means it’s worth paying more for higher commercial quality videos.

Your script will be crucial. A good video ad chooses a problem to solve, highlights how painful this problem is, shows how it is solved with your help, and asks viewers to take action to work with you.

This shouldn’t cost an arm and a leg, but you should consider the promotion paid for in your budget. The 80/20 rule applies: dedicate 20% of your time and budget to creation, 80% to promotion.

Related: 5 Steps to Making Winning Marketing Bets

5. Sponsor key, proven trade shows

Now that you know what shows are worth betting on, bet a lot. Be the beauty of the ball. Get a large space. Bring a computer to manage your stand. Sponsor educational sessions. Give an educational session. Pay for a digital billboard on the site – to present a speakerphone, to dial the complementary WiFi network and password, to show your video to a committed audience.

Success at a fair is not linear. You have to create a lot of buzz to get traction, and that attention tends to pay off exponentially. Professional advice: Local and regional shows usually provide a better return on investment than national or international shows. It is easier and less expensive to highlight.

6. Form a team with complementary partners for joint marketing

Partnering with another brand can help you increase your reputation and revenue. A good partner has the overlap of the target audience, shared values, and complementary offerings (i.e., you serve the same people, you have similar mindsets, and customers need you both anyway).

It puts a complete market move behind these partnerships. Write press releases, get pages on other people’s websites, talk about them to your customers, allow other people’s sales teams to sell for you, and do joint marketing through webinars, events, and other content. You can usually market partnerships for free, but be willing to put money into them.

Related: 5 steps that all one person sales and marketing teams should follow

7. Organize your own events in person

Two things are true: time dealing with customers helps you sell more and keep accounts longer, and people want to be invited to events.

The most effective customer events connect customers, partners, and leads with a common denominator (you). They educate everyone about the problems they solve and give attendees an excuse to leave the office (or home).

Whether it’s for half a day, full day, several days or just enough time to watch a ball game, it creates opportunities to bring your community together and have fun. If you are a local business, these events are much easier. If you work all over the country, or the world, then travel to places where you have customer centers and organize smaller events.

No marketing trick alone will catapult your business to high growth. Make sure you have a product that people are willing to pay for, clear messages, and satisfied customers. Then start using other effective marketing tactics and channels like the ones above. Stack, don’t hack your way to growth. Nail one, then hold it while you put layers on the next one and repeat. In no time, you’ll have a marketing flyer that won’t come out.

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