The seven Ps of marketing can sometimes be hard to navigate. As a start-up founder, you’ll have to get your head around product, price, promotion, place, packaging, positioning and people. We’ve tried to help - and have busted a few marketing myths to get you started.

Marketing is expensive

It doesn’t have to be. There are scalable solutions depending on the audience you want to hit. As a start-up, you’re unlikely to be splashing the cash on TV ad campaigns straight away - so think about how you’re going to grow your brand. Social media is free. Talking about your business to people is free. Let other people be your messengers; your tribe; your brand ambassadors. Even if you have little budget to spend, you can make it go a long way. Spending on pay-per-click social media advertising can be a very efficient way to spread the message around your product or service.

You need a marketing guru on board

If you’ve got a budget to hire a marketing professional, great. But you don’t necessarily need one right at the start. Just make sure you devise a plan – think about your audience and how you can reach them, then make actions alongside some timescales for how you’ll achieve it all.
Your key messages are really important here. What does your product or brand do differently? What purpose does it serve? Try to put yourself in your customers’ shoes - what would make you buy into your product or service?

You can’t measure marketing

It can be hard to measure the success of your marketing campaigns - but not impossible. Sure, some people will see your brand and not do anything about it for a while or sometimes ever, but there are ways to trace where your customers have come from. As with any marketing campaign, make sure you set some targets at the beginning. You’ll want a return on investment from anything you do to decide on whether to repeat or change what you’ve been doing. Make sure you ask your customers where they heard about your business, track where people are coming from on your website and see how many people are clicking on your social media posts.

It’s all about digital marketing these days

Even in the internet age with everything at our fingertips, there’s still a place for more traditional methods. Remember, people still buy from people and customers often value speaking to a person rather than a bot. Networking is still key when it comes to starting out: talking to people to get your message across succinctly. People also still read magazines and some regional newspapers are even seeing a resurgence, so print isn’t dead – at least yet, anyway. 

Marketing can solve everything

Marketing plays a big part in business, but it’s not everything. Even the best marketing campaigns – ones that cost millions of pounds – often fail. Remember the Budweiser ‘Whassup’ ads in the early 2000s? The ads and the expensive marketing campaign around them won almost every award going but failed to halt the decline in beer sales.

Virgin StartUp offers support to founders starting out on their journey. Talk to us to see how we might be able to help.