The StartupYard Big Book of Marketing

Look mom.. no marketing! That’s an idea that seems to pop up quite a bit when it comes to startups that have had some early traction. “We got 5,000 pre-orders… and we didn’t do any marketing.”

Of course that begs two questions right away. First of all: “what is marketing really?” If we define marketing as any activity that promotes a product or aims to help a product find its market fit, then a lot of things are marketing, even if we don’t call them marketing. Literally doing no marketing is very difficult if you define it that way.

Of course, we know what “no marketing” really means. No paid advertising. No organized, deliberate promotional activities. This brings us to the second question: “If you can gain traction without really trying to get your messaging right, what could you achieve if you were actually trying?”

This post is going to talk about marketing for startups. It is not a playbook, or a set of rules. More it’s a collection of principles and approaches that, in our experience, tend to work best. As any marketing professional should be able to admit: we can’t tell you what will work but we can tell you what has worked before.