A “good idea” will only get you so far being an Entrepreneur.
Conference-after-conference I hear tons of amazing ideas for new websites, apps, products, and services but very few of these people are actually successful.
Specifically, while speaking at a dating conference in Los Angeles several years ago, two very bright Entrepreneurs explained to me their dating app they had developed. It was literately one of the best ideas I had ever heard but when I asked about their marketing plan, they simply said “bid on dating on Google Adwords.”
Unfortunately, that didn’t get them too far as that was the last I ever heard of their mobile app. It’s no wonder because there are billion-dollar companies bidding on their target keyword, hence Google Adwords can be VERY expensive, and this can cripple start-ups with very limited capital.
Regardless of how awesome your product or service is, your marketing plan will make or break it.
Here are seven steps that I recommend you should consider prior to taking your “idea” to the market:
- Gather Data – Research and study your competition like crazy! Buy similar products / use other services to see what the market looks like. Gather as much data as humanly possible.
- Analyze The Results – After you’ve spent some time gathering data, using the application, and getting feedback from others – look for trends that you can exploit. Look for the common denominator, it’s your competitive advantage.
- Set Goals – Every Entrepreneur wants to be the next Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg. But you have to be realistic. You didn’t learn to walk until you could crawl. And you could run until you could walk. Set realistic goals and stick to them as you launch your marketing plan.
- Develop A Strategy – Think about a professional football team. Prior to each game they spend hours watching tape and developing a solid “game plan” how to beat the opposing team. You should develop a similar strategy when starting your marketing plan. How are you going to beat your competitors when you’re fighting for the same traffic?
- Implement The Plan – This should go without saying, but if you’ve made it this far, make sure to put your plan into action. Your own self-confidence can be your own worse enemy! You’ll never know until your try!
- Track The Progress – Nowadays there are countless number of tools out there to track your conversion funnel from start to finish. Make sure you’re keeping a close eye on how much you spend to gain a customer and where your sales funnel can be improved.
- Evaluate The Result – Your first marketing plan isn’t going to be your last. You may even fail several times. But make sure you learn something each time you run a campaign. Even if you lose a bit of money, make up for it in knowledge. Evaluate all of these results so you don’t make the same mistake twice.
Marketing your product or service doesn’t have to be rocket science, but you should approach it with a plan so you don’t get trapped in the Entrepreneur ADHD mindset and end up not seeing every campaign through.
Remember: Your great idea is only as successful as your marketing strategy. Make it a good one!
Ryan Gray is the founder and CEO of NameHero, one of the fastest growing independent web hosts in the United States. Ryan has been working online since 1998 and has over two-decades experience in Internet Entrepreneurship.