I recently got introduced to Alyssa Hitaka at TopTierStartups.com, a new content site rich with startup related news, tips and interviews with startup founders. I was curious what her startup founders were seeing, in terms of the best marketing strategies they are successfully using today. Alyssa was kind enough to interview ten of her founders, to get those learnings. And, we are both pleased to share those learnings with all of you, to help you with your own marketing efforts. Here is the list:
1. Katja Kaine at The Novel Company: Word of mouth and great customer service
Word of mouth is one of the most important ways a founder can get the word out about their products or services. Katja Kaine, founder of The Novel Company, has focused on slow and organic growth of her innovative writing technology, gradually building up a strong reputation among customers. Katja also emphasizes the importance of engaging with customers personally—she responds to all emails herself, which indicates to users that the company truly listens and cares, further boosting loyalty.
2. Robert Brüll at FibreCoat: LinkedIn and startup awards
LinkedIn is a must for just about any modern-day professional, and Robert Brüll, founder of high-performance materials startup FibreCoat, encourages fellow entrepreneurs to make the most of the platform to market their brands. His company also regularly participates in startup award contests, and winning awards helps his business build its reputation, secure positive feedback, and gain traction among the target demographic. When paired with FibreCoat’s powerful LinkedIn presence, these awards stretch even further and help drive more traffic at live events, which further boost the company’s reputation among consumers.
3. Vita Valka at Camperguru: Connecting with consumers in real life
These days, a lot of brands rely on digital media to promote their products and services, and Vita Valka’s Camperguru has also leveraged the algorithms at Facebook and Pinterest to evoke interest and familiarity with the target demographic. What gives the innovative camping app its edge, however, is the connections its team of ambassadors make with campers on the ground. Camperguru’s team of passionate campers tour some of Europe’s best campgrounds and, in the perfect locations with highly concentrated groups of avid campers, spread the word about the app in person.
4. Wolfgang Rückerl at Entity: High-quality content and interactivity
Content marketing is a major growth driver for a lot of businesses today, and Wolfgang Rückerl affirms its powerful role in growing his blockchain startup Entity. Focusing on valuable information, crisp graphics, and thorough explanations of the company’s more technical aspects, Robert has built up a solid community of users for his app. An important addition to his marketing strategy is engagement and interactivity on social media, with Entity regularly designing contests, games, and events for users and prospective users to participate in. Robert credits this interactive marketing approach to strengthening trust with followers and driving growth of the platform.
5. Stefanie Palomino at ROOM: Maintaining a holistic approach
There’s a lot involved in promoting your new startup, with many ways to approach marketing and many factors to consider throughout your company’s continued interaction with consumers. Stefanie Palomino, founder of innovative telecommunications application ROOM, stresses the importance of adopting a holistic approach to marketing. She encourages entrepreneurs to consider the full user journey, from their first acquaintance with your brand to their continued use of your service or product. The data you collect from existing customers—both quantitative and qualitative—can help inform your precise marketing strategy, building lasting relationships and trust with loyal users.
6. Deanna Visperas at GoVirtuals: Influential staff as a marketing strategy
The staff of a company define its aura and atmosphere, and how a company feels can have a major impact on prospective customers. Deanna Visperas, who founded virtual assistant company GoVirtuals, firmly believes that her marketing success is rooted in the influential individuals who staff her team. According to Deanna, thought leadership and employee advocacy are key to building a brand’s reputation and cultivating trust among consumers, so fostering your employees’ talents and influence is a great way to grow your business. Happy employees can lead to happy customers.
7. Mark Brouwers at Nocto: Collaboration with similar brands
The startup world is big, and while similar companies are conventionally viewed as competitors, Mark Brouwers reveals why it’s often better to see them as partners. Mark has built up his unique hospitality connector platform, Nocto, through collaboration with similar businesses who share goals and target demographics with his company. Designing win-win strategies help both companies grow, and as an added bonus, collaboration generally means you save time, money, and effort. This marketing strategy will also allow you to forge meaningful relationships with other professionals in the industry, which can open all sorts of new doors for your brand.
8. Siebe van Mensfoort at Simbeyond: Leveraging industry events
Though online marketing makes up a huge portion of modern-day companies’ promotional efforts, offline marketing can be just as powerful, if not more. Siebe van Mensfoort, founder of Simbeyond—a startup that creates software tools for the development of high-tech devices—regularly partakes in industry events to boost his brand. This marketing strategy takes him all over the world, to conference presentations and exhibitions alike, and has allowed all sorts of interested prospective customers to discover Simbeyond. As a bonus, regular participation in industry events gives Siebe a solid grasp of the latest market innovations.
9. Sam Kynman-Cole at topVIEW: Google Ads and direct calls
Sometimes, the simplest marketing approaches are also the most effective. Sam Kynman-Cole from topVIEW, a digital startup that allows businesses to create virtual 3D tours of their indoor spaces, recommends Google Ads as an effective strategy for B2B companies. However, he highlights directly reaching out to potentially interested parties as his number-one marketing approach. Phone calls are the best, Sam advises, but a personalized email is also effective for less urgent situations. He also praises LinkedIn as a great way to make direct connections with specific people, much like personalized emails.
10. Joe Menninger at Startuprad.io: SEO and media exchanges
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a major buzzword in content marketing, and for good reason—it boosts your rank in search engines, helping prospective consumers find your brand. Joe Menninger, founder of Startuprad.io, an English-language podcast covering startup news in the German-speaking world, highlights how crucial it is to create transcripts of podcast episodes. For each episode, he generates a transcript and a detailed blog post, which allows him to deliver high-quality audio content to listeners while still tapping into search engine algorithms. Joe also collaborates with other podcasts, creating a win-win scenario that boosts the followers of both shows.
So, hopefully, there are some useful “nuggets” here for you all to use in your businesses. Thanks again to Alyssa for her research and helping me create this post.
George Deeb is a Partner at Red Rocket Ventures and author of 101 Startup Lessons-An Entrepreneur’s Handbook.