Growing a startup company has never been easy. Finding your ideal niche, taking on the harsh competitors, getting the funding, reaching your target markets – it all takes extreme dedication, hard work, and luck, especially now when the COVID-19 pandemic is slowly entering our rearview mirrors.
The pandemic has had a devastating effect on already established and new businesses alike. Many companies have been forced to close their doors, but many have found ways to thrive, as well. Some of the most renowned brands have recorded astonishing market caps in 2021, and if you hope to be like them one day, you need to start working on your startup now.
Take a look at some of the best tips that will help you grow your startup and navigate the post-pandemic business landscape.
1. Focus on organic marketing
One of the first goals for many new business owners is drawing attention from as many people as possible as quickly as possible. Naturally, that usually means investing thousands upon thousands into paid ads, billboards, and elaborate marketing campaigns.
While there’s nothing inherently wrong with that, and you certainly stand to reap some benefits from it, if you want to attract qualified leads and establish a deeper connection with your target markets, you’ll need to focus on organic marketing.
Organic marketing is your long-term strategy for success. You won’t see immediate results, but you’ll enjoy far more significant benefits from it down the line as your lead generation and conversion will become easier.
According to EWR Digital, an enterprise SEO agency, focusing on organic marketing allows you to establish a better online reputation, outshine your competitors, and improve your ROI.
2. Enhance the customer experience
Your pricing and the quality of your products and services are essential for the success of your startup, but they mean little and less if you’re delivering a subpar customer experience (CX).
Over 92% of consumers will stop doing business with a brand after a few negative experiences. However, over a third of them will forget about your brand after a single bad experience. What this means for your new startup is that prioritizing the customer experience is a must. It’s the only way to outperform the competition and build up your reputation.
Now, the problem is that there are a million different factors that shape the overall customer experience. Someone could simply be in a bad mood when interacting with your business, and it will impact their brand sentiment. Still, that doesn’t mean that you should disregard your CX altogether.
Focus on enhancing your site’s performance and making it more user-friendly, invest in employee training, have clear brand policies, offer omnichannel customer support. Most importantly, ask for and listen to customer feedback.
3. Embrace your social responsibility
Consumer priorities are changing, especially now in the middle of the pandemic. Your customers are no longer solely interested in what your products or services are like.
They’re interested in how you treat your employees, they want to know how you’re supporting your local communities, whether you’re using sustainable materials, whether you support important causes. They’re interested in brands that have a social responsibility.
To improve your social responsibility, you’ll need to genuinely commit to it. It’s not enough to make a donation to a charity every now and then and publish the activity on your social media accounts. You need to have a clearly-defined code of ethics, align your mission with your company values, commit to improving the workplace for all employees, and more.
4. Keep an eye on the competitors
Many new business owners make the mistake of analyzing the competition and the overall market only when they’re setting up shop. If you want to set your startup on a path to success, you’ll need to continually monitor your competitors.
It’s a critical process that will help you analyze your target audience’s likes and dislikes, common pain points, and general preferences. It will help you predict trends, assess market conditions, identify market gaps, and future-proof your business.
5. Prioritize customer retention
Finally, if you don’t want to be in the 90% of the startups that fail, you’ll need to prioritize customer retention, not customer acquisition. Of course, expanding your clientele is critical, but it shouldn’t be your top priority. Focus on inspiring customer loyalty and increasing your customer return rates.
By increasing customer retention by only 5%, you can increase your profits by as much as 95%. Additionally, you can use your return customers to improve your customer acquisition efforts, as well. After all, no marketing channel or lead generation strategy is as effective at expanding your audiences as your loyal brand ambassadors who enhance your word-of-mouth marketing.
Growing a startup in the post-pandemic business landscape is a challenge, but not an insurmountable one. Focus on organic marketing, enhance your customer experience, embrace your social responsibility, keep an eye on the competitors, prioritize customer retention, and start reaping the benefits.