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Digital Marketing Strategy for Startups


If you’ve recently started your own business, we applaud you and your courage to start your own venture! Your mind is probably racing with ideas on how you’re going to grow and better serve your customers, but one area where you should really focus your efforts is your digital marketing strategy.

Why focus on digital marketing over traditional? While we don’t discourage traditional marketing for startups, digital marketing will get you the reach and exposure you need with minimal cost (which is something many startups are in short supply of).

With digital marketing, there are plenty of organic ways to expand your consumer base without spending a lot of money. Digital marketing allows your startup to get more accomplished with sharper targeting, which leads to decreased time and resources spent. Also, when executed correctly, it will build brand awareness, bring a consistent flow of traffic to your website, and drive leads and online sales.

Below are some cost-effective digital marketing areas that startups should spend some time on while building out their digital marketing strategy.


Search engine optimization is very cost-effective with measurable, long-term benefits. When your content is optimized, you will increase both organic traffic and exposure to your startup’s website.

To create an SEO-friendly website, make sure it is mobile-friendly and secure, especially if your business is an eCommerce business. Use appropriate tags, headers and descriptions, and focus on strong content and online PR, which will get visitors to talk about your site. 

Email Marketing

Although people are constantly flooded with emails from businesses trying to promote themselves, this strategy is still inexpensive, customizable and measurable with high ROI. Because it is so cost-effective, businesses can communicate with an audience of any size and personalize the experience with dynamic content.

For startups, your first step in email marketing is finding the best service provider. Constant Contact, MailChimp and SharpSpring (which is what we use) are all do-it-yourself (and affordable) platforms that offer plenty of tools to make sure your message is the most effective.

Secondly, create an email calendar and start writing emails for prospects/clients who at different places within the buyer’s journey (for example, send a welcome/thank you email after someone signs up for your email newsletter and a shopping cart abandonment email if someone leaves your website with a full cart).

Keep in mind that every email shouldn’t be promotional; some should inform the people about your business or even link to your blog. For your more “salesy” emails, think about creating emails that allow consumers to have a free trial of your service or offer a discount for their first purchase.

Content Marketing

Much like SEO, a startup can generate more traffic, leads and brand awareness through content marketing. The trick with successful content marketing is to create a lot of high-quality content to build more pages on your website and roll out fresh, intriguing content for the World Wide Web.

Your focus in content marketing needs to be on publishing strong, relevant content consistently. This can be done by setting up a blog on your website, where you can tell stories about your business/industry, answer common questions your customers ask and even have guest bloggers come in and write a piece for your website.

Social Media Marketing

Social media has allowed brands to build their personality/voice while engaging with their followers in real time. While it’s important to build a strong social media presence, only build it where it’s needed. Facebook and Twitter are a must for most startups, but not every one needs a Tumblr or Pinterest account. Know your audience and pick the best ones to engage them.

Once you build your pages, start thinking about why people would want to be a part of your community or follow you. Build a platform for customer engagement and seed it with the first few posts. Let your followers take over while you monitor and comment when necessary.

Startups are faced with bigger challenges than more-established businesses, but with the right marketing mix and execution you’ll be well on your way to growing your startup at the right pace for success. “Start up” your digital marketing strategy for your startup today!

About the Author

Brooke Desmond

Communications Manager
With a passion for all things digital marketing, Brooke aims to give a unique perspective on the latest trends and ideas in this ever-changing space.

View Brooke's Profile

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