Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes
#1 – The Four P’s
I was introduced to E. Jerome McCarthy’s four P’s later in my career. I wish I had known them earlier. There is no more perfect summation of marketing. Each of the P’s is a lever at your disposal. As a startup founder or CEO, understanding the four P’s will help you know which of the four levers to pull to beat your competition. Learn them.
#2 – Market Sizing and Segmentation
If TAM, SAM and CAGR mean nothing to you, you have a problem. Whether you are creating or disrupting a market, knowing how big it is, and what segments are most ripe for the picking are critical. Read more.
#3 – How to Develop a Positioning Statement
Positioning is sometimes referred to as the fifth P, along with product, price, place, and promotion. Founders spend the formative years of their companies answering a constant stream of questions from prospective employees, investors, and investors: What are you? Is that like so-and-so? How are you different from [insert large company that will no-doubt crush you]? Developing a desired position, and formalizing it with a positioning statement, are critical steps on your way to profit and glory. Read on.
#4 – Building and Delivering the Killer Presentation
Many presentations are, well, not good. If you want to stand out among the other startups and gain more press attention, buzz, investor dollars, and early customers, good presentations can help a lot. And I’m not impressed by war stories about busy execs to create their slides ‘in the cab from the airport.’ Chances are their audience could tell. Do yourself a favor and put in some real prep time and practice. Learn how.
#5 – How to Build a Funnel Model
How many leads do you need, exactly? Don’t know? It all starts with the funnel model. If you are in a startup and your product is ready to sell, you need to model your sales process to understand how much to invest in your sales team and marketing budget. The model also acts as a set of guideposts that will let you know if you are on track to hit your numbers. Learn how to reverse calculate from your revenue target back up through the funnel to visitors on your website. Read on.
#6 – How to Write a Press Release
The workhorse of public relations is the press release. Written in the form of a conventional news story, a press release alerts the media to an organization’s news and presents it in that organization’s point of view. Editors and reporters use facts, quotes, and other information contained in releases to flesh out their stories. Blogs are great, but if you are really going to grow, you need to know how to write a good press release. Learn how.
#7 – How to Build a Website
Every startup needs a website. I’m stating the obvious. So I’ll restate. Every successful startup needs a great website that meets its business goals: awareness, reach, virality, conversion. Building (or rebuilding) the right one takes a lot of effort. Here are some pointers on how you should conceive and plan your site. Read on.
#8 – Lead Nurturing and Progressive Profiling
Leads are the lifeblood of a startup. One common mistake made by startup marketing teams is ignoring leads that are not ready to pass to sales. These leads need to be nurtured – helped along – until they are ready. If you ignore them, you have wasted the money you spent to acquire them in the first place, and paying yet again for brand new leads that may or may not be more qualified. And as you nurture your leads, you can learn more about them, using what’s known as progressive profiling. Grok them here.
#9 – Building a Test and Measurement Culture
You can’t work in a startup these days without doing A/B testing. Multivariate if you are really good. There’s a reason why Optimizely is spreading like digital kudzu. But you can’t just buy software. You need to make testing part of your culture. Here’s how.
#10 – Creating a Sales Playbook
You have released product and are selling it. You want to scale the sales team to really start taking off. How do you make sure all the new guys know how to sell your product. The answer is a sales playbook. A cookie-cutter approach to selling that will work every time. Learn how to build one.
Did I miss any important ones? Does your startup go to eleven?
Startup essentials is a series of excerpts from The Professional Marketer. I’ve pulled out what I think are the most essential skills a founder or a marketer at a startup would need.