Startups are often ignored or badly served by marketing consultants because they have low budgets and limited resources. At Ground Floor Partners we have over a decade of experience helping startups and early stage businesses gather relevant, accurate market research and develop marketing plans, all on a limited budget.
Benefits of a Solid Marketing Plan
Most startups are long on ideas, but short on time, people and money. While every business needs a marketing plan, startups can’t invest hundreds of hours or tens of thousands of dollars on research and planning. They need relevant, accurate, current information that guides their decisions, and they need a streamlined marketing plan that helps them move forward expeditiously.
As the founder of a startup, you need to understand
- How large is our market?
- Who are our competitors?
- What are our greatest opportunities?
- What traps and pitfalls should we watch out for?
- How can we differentiate ourselves from the competition?
- What are the best ways to reach our target audience?
- How much do we need to spend to reach our goals?
It all sounds so simple, but it rarely is. First of all, your competitors aren’t stupid; they’ll use anything they can to put you out of business. If you invest too much in a dead end, or don’t properly differentiate yourself from everybody else, you could quickly burn through cash and get into trouble in a very short time.
Accurate market research combined with a solid marketing plan will help you get on the right path, and avoid the wrong ones.
Our Marketing Plan Process
Our startup marketing plan process consists of four stages:
- Market Research
- Analysis and Planning
- Monitoring and Adjusting
1. Market Research
Accurate, current market research is the foundation. Without it, you risk wasting money and time delivering the wrong products at the wrong price with the wrong message to the wrong customers. Our market research for startups yields solid, factual, defensible information that is directly relevant to your specific needs, not the needs of the “average” company in your industry.
- Survey design and execution (invite respondents, collect results, analyze, report)
- Phone or in-person interviews of customers, employees, executives, business owners, industry experts, etc.
- Focus groups, roundtables, and executive forums
- Market opportunity assessments (evaluate the potential for your ideas, products, services, or processes)
- Competitor analysis / competitive intelligence studies
- “Blue sky” (brainstorming) sessions on product / application / market possibilities
2. Analysis and Planning
We’ll develop a marketing strategy that differentiates your business from your competitors. We’ll help you differentiate your company from competitors in ways that are meaningful to customers; define (or refine) your company’s value proposition; and help your small business deliver the value you promise.
Then, we’ll help you execute by translating your marketing plan into action through all aspects of the marketing mix
4. Monitoring and Adjusting
To be successful in the long run, you need to establish metrics to track results and continually refine the approach. Your tracking system can be as simple as one or two Excel spreadsheets, or as elaborate as a complete executive marketing dashboard.
Our marketing planning process can be tailored to your specific needs. Even if your company is in the earliest stages of development, we can help.
Contact Us now to discuss your market research and marketing plan goals.