How to Raise Revenue for an Entrepreneurial Start-Up

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship ArticleThe first step in raising revenue for an entrepreneurial start-up is to outline a detailed marketing strategy. It is important for start-up entrepreneurs to test their assumptions as soon as they can. A big reason for the success of established companies is that they never invest large capital or significant time on any project unless they have determined that it has an overwhelming probability of success. The corporate world taught me that most ideas fail in the marketplace. When this happens, it should fail quickly and cheaply. You just want to make sure that you are not overwhelmingly hurt when you experience this inevitable fact.

Complete the following exercise carefully before you launch your marketing campaign. Accuracy in this exercise will be crucial to your future business success:

1. Decide who is your ideal customer – Most entrepreneurs start with a great product or service idea, but fail in correctly identifying their ideal customer and instead will sell to anyone who buys from them. This is probably one of the biggest mistakes I still see today, especially in the online world.

There are two main reasons you want to determine who these ideal or dream customers are: first, your ideal customers will appreciate your offers and will pay for it based on your value, not price; and second, they are more likely to refer more business your way.

[wcm_restrict]Here are some basic tips for figuring out your ideal customer:

  • What are their demographics/psychographics? – Where do they live? How old are they? What gender? What kind of job? Income level? Ethnicity? Education level? Hobbies or interests? What websites do they visit most often? What magazines, newspapers, or blogs do they read? What kind of food do they like to eat? Are they liberal or conservative?
  • What do they look like? — Healthy? Obese? Thin? Old? Young?
  • What are they passionate about? What do they aspire to do? Dream about?

Identifying and selling to your ideal customer will result in happier customers who will buy from you and recommend your business. I suggest that entrepreneurs create an “ideal customer” document to make sure all new customers fit the mold.

2. Where can you find your ideal customer? Once you know who your ideal customer is, you need to connect with them to let them about your business; in other words, you need to know where you can find them. Find out what social media they are most active in. Facebook? Twitter? LinkedIn? What activities are they involved in? Golf? Basketball? Theater? Volunteering? Community or industry/business events? Do they read trade magazines or local newspapers? Your list of demographics and psychographics will help you with this.

You can now see why knowing your ideal customer is so important. Unless you really know your ideal customers, how would you know where to find them?

3. What marketing message will attract them? Once you know your ideal customers and where to find them, now you need to decide what marketing message will attract them. What can you offer to make them try out your business?

  • First off, marketing messages need to focus on your ideal customer’s ‘wants’ and ‘desires’ and should promise a solution for those wants and desires. Make sure that your marketing document (and a “marketing document” for the purposes of this discussion can mean anything from a website, landing page, advertisement [print or online banner], direct mail letter, email, etc.) has:
    • A well-constructed headline to attract your ideal customer’s attention
    • Sub-headline that promises the solution they crave
    • Additional copy that builds your case further
    • Call-to-action to try your product

Your promise/solution and call to action is the most important piece of your message. Unless you are an accomplished copywriter, you may want to invest small amount of money to get this done from a professional.

In marketing, a call to action or CTA is an implicit instruction to your ideal customers to provoke an immediate response, usually using an imperative verb such as “buy now”, “find out more” or “visit us today.” A call-to-action is often indirect; for example, you offer a free trial or consultation, a teaser product like free report or case study to capture their interest and their information for further follow-up marketing. Regardless of whether your CTA is direct (ex: “Buy Now!”) or indirect (“Fill out the form for your free case study!”), it should always be concise, highly visible, and very easy for your ideal customer to see and understand exactly what they should be doing next.[/wcm_restrict][wcm_nonmember]

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About the Author

Ajay PrasadAjay Prasad owns GMR Web Team, a digital marketing agency dedicated to helping businesses maximize revenue from internet. He also invests in web-based start-ups. Ajay also operates a seven-figure web based business, GMR Transcription, which he built from scratch and grew it by using strategies that he uses for his digital marketing clients.

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