Running the Akcela Startup Incubator here in the UK, as well as numerous startup-based consultancy projects, marketing is always a topic that many founders worry about. Especially when budgets are tight and many founders start with domain knowledge, making marketing a new concept.
Marketing is one of the most important aspects of any business, regardless of its size or stage in development. It can be difficult for startup companies to know where to start when it comes to marketing, but thankfully there are seven basic principles that can serve as a guide. These seven principles are known as the 7Ps of marketing, these being: product, price, place, promotion, people, process, and physical evidence. Each of which we discuss below. We will also outline these 7Ps in respect of an organisation finding its own product market fit (PMF).
As a startup, do I need to market my product?
Regardless of size or stage in development, all businesses need to market their products in some way. Even startups that don’t have a fully defined product yet still need to do marketing – this unstructured marketing may simply be a form of direct marketing to potential early adopters, getting them to try the product and give feedback. The key is to start early and be consistent with your messaging.
Branding vs Marketing – what are the differences?
Branding and marketing are two terms that are often used interchangeably, but there are in fact some key differences between the two. Marketing is all about promoting a product or service in order to generate sales and revenue, while branding is the process of creating a unique name, image, and identity for a company or product.
Branding is often considered to be more long-term than marketing, as it establishes an initial impression that can be difficult to change. A strong brand will make customers more likely to return in the future, even if the product itself changes or improves. Marketing, on the other hand, needs to be more constantly updated in order to stay relevant and reach new audiences.
It’s important for startups to remember that branding is not just about designing a cool logo or coming up with a clever name – it’s about building a positive reputation for the company and its products. This takes time and effort but is extremely valuable in the long run.
The 7Ps of Marketing
As discussed earlier, the 7Ps of marketing are a set of basic principles that can serve as a guide for any business, regardless of size or stage in development.
Price is an important part of any marketing strategy, and it falls into the category of “pricing strategies”. There are several different types of pricing strategies that can be used, but the most common are cost-based pricing, market-based pricing, and value-based pricing.
Cost-based pricing is where a company sets its prices based on the costs of producing and delivering the product or service. This is often used by businesses that have high fixed costs, such as manufacturers. Market-based pricing is where a company sets its prices based on what competitors are charging for similar products. This is a common strategy for industries with low barriers to entry, such as the technology sector. Value-based pricing is where a company sets its prices based on how much customers value the product or service. This is often used by companies that offer premium products or services.
It’s important for startups to choose the right pricing strategy, as it can have a big impact on sales and revenue. It’s also important to regularly review and adjust prices in order to stay competitive.
A startup company’s pricing strategy can be difficult to define, as they may not have the same level of data and information that larger companies have when it comes to their products. Competitor research and user feedback will help a startup to better understand what prices people are willing to pay for their product, and how this compares to the competition.
The product is an important part of the marketing mix, and it falls into the category of “product positioning”. There are several different ways to position a product, but the most common are functional positioning, emotional positioning, and price positioning.
Functional positioning is where a company emphasises the practical benefits of its product, such as its features and functionality. This is often used by companies in the technology sector. Emotional positioning is where a company focuses on the emotional benefits of its product, such as how it will make the customer feel. This is often used by companies in the lifestyle and fashion sectors. Price positioning is where a company sets its prices based on how much customers are willing to pay, regardless of the product’s features or benefits. This is often used by companies in the luxury goods sector.
It’s important for startups to choose the right product positioning, as it can have a big impact on sales and revenue. It’s also important to regularly review and adjust product positioning in order to stay competitive.
Promotion is all about getting people to know about your product or service, and there are several different types of promotion that can be used. The most common are advertising, public relations, and direct marketing.
Advertising is where a company pays for space in newspapers, magazines, online publications, or on television or radio stations in order to promote its product or service. Public relations is where a company gets positive publicity by arranging for journalists and bloggers to write favourable articles about its products or services. Direct marketing is where a company sends out direct mailers or emails to potential customers in order to promote its products or services.
It’s important for startups to choose the right type of promotion, as it can have a big impact on sales and revenue. It’s also important to regularly review and adjust promotions in order to stay competitive. One metric to do so is Cost per acquisition (CPA).
CPA is the total cost of acquiring a customer, divided by the number of customers acquired. It’s an important metric that businesses can use to measure the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns. By using CPA as a metric, businesses can determine which marketing campaigns are most effective and make adjustments accordingly.
When it comes to the 7Ps of marketing, place is all about how a company chooses to distribute its product. There are two main ways to distribute a product: through direct selling or through retail channels.
Direct selling is where a company sells its product directly to customers, either through its own sales force or through a distribution network. Retail channels is where a company sells its product through authorised retailers, such as supermarkets, department stores, or speciality stores.
It’s important for startups to choose the right distribution method, as it can have a big impact on sales and revenue. It’s also important to regularly review and adjust distribution in order to stay competitive.
When it comes to the 7Ps of marketing, people is all about the people who are involved in the marketing process. There are three main groups of people who need to be considered: the customer, the sales force, and the distribution force.
The customer is the most important group, as they are the ones who buy the product. It’s important for startups to understand who their target market is and what their needs and wants are.
The sales force is responsible for selling the product to customers, so it’s important for them to be well-trained and knowledgeable about the product.
The distribution force is responsible for getting the product to customers, so it’s important for them to have a good distribution network in place.
It’s important for startups to consider all three groups when planning their marketing strategy, as they all play an important role in achieving success. We strongly believe in the first stages of a business the customer and their opinions are vital for future success. Taking the extra time to understand their needs and aligning to them can be a powerful marketing tool. In fact, customer backed innovation, solving the issues that customers really have, is an incredibly powerful marketing position. You will literally be selling something that truly solves their problems.
When it comes to the 7Ps of marketing, process is all about the steps that are taken to plan and execute a marketing campaign. There are four main steps in the process: planning, execution, measurement, and optimization.
Planning is where a company decides what type of promotion it wants to do and determines how much money it wants to spend on it. Execution is where the company actually carries out the promotion. Measurement is where a company measures the results of the promotion and determines whether or not it was successful. Optimisation is where a company makes adjustments to the promotion based on the results that were measured.
It’s important for startups to go through all four steps in order to ensure that their marketing campaigns are effective. By using the 7Ps of marketing as a guide, they can make sure that each step is executed properly and that they are getting the most out of their marketing budget.
When it comes to the 7Ps of marketing, physical evidence is all about using tangible evidence to support a company’s marketing claims. This can be in the form of product samples, demonstration models, or customer testimonials.
Physical evidence is an important part of any marketing campaign, as it helps to back up a company’s claims and persuade customers to buy the product. It’s important for startups to use physical evidence to support their marketing claims, as it can help increase sales and revenue.
When it comes to marketing, physical evidence is an important part of any campaign. This is because it helps to back up a company’s claims and persuade customers to buy the product. For startups, physical evidence is even more important, as they are more of a risk than established companies.
Established companies have a track record that customers can trust, which means they don’t need as much physical evidence to support their marketing claims. Startups, on the other hand, don’t have a track record and need to use physical evidence to win over customers and increase sales.
Do startups need to worry about all 7Ps?
While it’s important for startups to understand all of the 7Ps of marketing, they don’t need to follow them to the letter of the law constantly. Instead, they can use them as a guide to help them plan and execute successful marketing campaigns.
By understanding the different aspects of marketing, startups can ensure that they are targeting the right audience and selling the right product. They can also use physical evidence to support their marketing claims and make sure that their campaigns are effective.
Overall, understanding all 7Ps is important for startups, as it helps them to create a well-rounded marketing strategy that will increase sales and revenue.