It is common nowadays to think that starting a business, developing a new product, building a new e-commerce site or a new SAAS software is easier than ever. This is certainly true for many of the tasks involved in starting and registering the company, especially for the mechanical ones. However, sustainable business requires great dedication and innovation to cut through the noise. Even if you have the top notch software product, superior to any competition on the market, you will still need to work very, very hard to push it through the enormous amount of information flowing to your potential customers. You will still need to fight for attention for your product, so that it could have any chance to survive on the market. Given the overflow of ads and general information, your chances to grab the attention of your potential customers is pretty low. There were days that the Internet was small, and almost any product that was online had the chances to be successful and self-sustainable. However these days are over!
One way of making it through the dip is the good old-fashioned “throw-some-big-money- for-advertising” way. It will most likely work for a while and generate some exciting new leads. It will certainly bring visitors to your site, probably will turn some of them to your first paying customers. But let’s be honest – not everyone has the resources to pull this off.
Instead, smart startups are hacking their way through the noise. They make special efforts to make their brand lovable and recognisable. The thing is that most people, especially business people, think that this can only be achieved with an enormous budget, a big part of which will go into buying ads. However, they miss hundreds of good examples how small companies have managed to put their name on the map. Smart startups will seize every opportunity to talk to their clients or prospective clients and make them feel special. Smart startups will invest mainly in a good relationship with their existing clients, because if their existing clients love them, everything good will follow. It is estimated that it costs the average business 6-7 times more to acquire a new customer than it does to retain a current one. Loyalty programs are one way of keeping your current customers happy and engaged, which lowers a brand’s need for new customer acquisition while doing wonders for its retention. Also, fast response time and excellent support are a big contributor to brand loyalty, and people tend to underestimate this. Some companies, especially in IT, will win customers solely offering their excellent support, which eventually turns into a winning point.
The point is that money will buy you ads, but it will not buy brand loyalty, which eventually turns into word of mouth and helps you grow your small business, without a huge budget to spend. It is always easier for the cool kid on the block to get what he wants, because everybody loves him.