Photo: Zach Beatty
There’s a lot more planning and strategy involved in marketing a new brand than many entrepreneurs anticipate. Poor execution can derail even the best product.To get some perspective, we spoke to Zach Beatty, Marketing Manager of Blue Fountain Media about what exactly is involved in the process, and how to successfully pull off a campaign.
Below is a slightly-edited transcript of our conversation:
What’s the first thing a new brand should consider when it comes to marketing strategy?
The first step a new brand should take when developing their marketing strategy is making sure that they have a strong understanding of their target customer. Without this, it’s easy to create messaging that is too broad or that doesn’t address the customer’s actual needs. This can be a challenge for new brands if they try to appeal to too large an audience from the start and end up not resonating with potential customers.
When should a young brand start marketing themselves? Is it ever too early to start?
It’s never too early to start. Even in the early stages of bringing an idea to life, there are communities of potential customers that will not only become an early following, but also that will help spread the word about your brand.
What’s the biggest marketing mistake a new brand can make?
One of the most common problems I see with new brands is lengthy or confusing messaging that alienates the potential customer. People tend to have short attention spans, so brands need to present a clear, concise and powerful message that draws their audience in.
Let’s talk about digital marketing. This is one of the most popular ways brands get their names out there. Are brands that don’t market online doomed to fail? Are there any exceptions to the rule?
Brands that don’t market online aren’t doomed to fail, but they are missing out on exposure to potential customers. For some brands a majority of business may come from referrals—but even in this case, potential clients will likely look the brand up online at some point. Ensuring that your online presence speaks well to the brand is important even for these types of brands.
Is there a difference in the strategies a brand employs when marketing online and when marketing offline?
Absolutely. The online and offline customer differ in part due to the mediums being used to reach them; so both messaging and value propositions may vary. Additionally, because of the different types of attribution and metrics available for on- and off-line advertising, new brands often approach the two mediums are often approached with different goals and success metrics.
What’s your number one piece of advice to startups about creating brand awareness?
For a startup trying to create brand awareness, one of the most important things is to not lose focus on making a great product that address their customers needs. A great product will gather a loyal following, but if the offering doesn’t address customer needs, efforts spent marketing it will not pay off.
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