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Method

Product definition

When we find a market-verified value proposition, we move to define the product and ways of taking it to the market. This usually means building prototypes, smoke tests and understanding launch channels and features.

Read on

1. UX – User experience

UX is basically the most important process while developing a product. It will help you know your target audience and define your product. If done smartly, it can also help you avoid future mistakes and pitfalls.

How to begin

When starting a digital company, or creating a product in general, you should begin by understanding its different aspects. Here is some of what you need to know:

  • Why you’re doing it
  • Who it’s for
  • The desired result
  • How to track it
  • How to know it’s successful
  • Who the future customers are
  • How customers find their way to your product

For more information on defining your startup, see our “Idea Validation and Prototyping” article.

What, why, for whom?

You should check available analytics, heatmaps, and customer behaviors. By analyzing current statuses and pain points you can then start to shape the basic architecture of what the product or brand should include. It’s important to create a screen flow (how things are connected) before making the design, to have a basic general overview of the whole project. Creating personas of model users and mapping their journeys through the product is also key.

From these previous steps you can start to draw the first sketches and wireframes.

Give shape to your idea, discuss the basic structure, layout, and contents with your team. Do many quick iterations to get the final structures and wireframes so the graphic design can begin.

Design

When you start the graphic design phase, it shouldn’t be something random based on your taste. With the previous knowledge gathered, you should have a solid idea of what you’re doing and for who it’s for.

Style guides and mood boards are key to compiling a bank of references and inspirations. Creating clickable prototypes is very important so you can feel the product for real. You have to validate your results and collect real user data before and after the product is launched. Even after testing, reality will indicate changes and features that should be tweaked, so you should always iterate the product.

2. Marketing Strategies and Campaigns

There you go, you big entrepreneur! You’ve brought your idea to life! Congratulations! Now let's show the rest of the world how amazing your project is.

STDC

Did you know your potential customers have “shopping” habits? And even better: Did you know you can use them for your marketing strategy? Those habits have four shopping phases and are called See-Think-Do-Care (STDC) and were invented by Google Marketing evangelist Avinash Kaushik. Marketers all over the world use this technique to attract potential customers. Learn from it.

STDC is basically about building a relationship with your customers. If you’re doing it right, your customers will very soon become loyal customers, telling your story and selling your products to their friends and family.

Phase 1: See

At this point people haven't heard about you yet. In this phase you are talking to all your potential customers. If you’re selling a car, you have to talk to all the drivers. People can buy your product, but don't count on that in this phase. Right now you are basically trying to catch their attention. Run your profiles on social media, shoot a video, write a blog about your business, and don't forget about pay-per-click (PPC) and search engine optimization (SEO).

Phase 2: Think

Now customers are starting to think about actually buying a car, so you have to show them the reasons why they should buy a car from you. You have to show your experience, give them some advice on how to buy the right car for their needs, and show them how you can help them if they can’t decide. Write ‘How to’ blog posts, shoot a video comparing different cars, or run a PPC targeting people who are looking for advice.

Phase 3: Do

Customers are ready to buy a product, but they aren’t sure where. You have to show them that the easiest way to get what they want is at your business. Show them how easy it is, invent some “kick ass” solution, give them something special, and be better than your competitors. Good reviews will always help. Think about an affiliate program, show them your lucky customers and the benefits you have.

Phase 4: Care

Customers have already bought your product and you want them to buy more and spread the word to friends and family, or write a great review and come back. Offer them free customer care. Let them know how to take care of a product you sold them, be ready to solve any issue they might have. Show them they are the part of a ‘family’ and you actually care about their needs.

The most important part of the whole strategy is knowing your customer and target group better. If you know who they are, where they live, what they like, what they prefer, why they chose you etc., you will be able to target your communication better and also be ready to upgrade your portfolio to include other products.

Content strategies

These days, content strategy is one of the most crucial parts of a marketing strategy. You are going to attract the customers with your experience, knowledge of your field, and show them just who you are. The market is full of people who want to succeed in your field and sometimes they have very similar products. The only differences will be your values and the personality you create for your business and company culture. You have to build a strong brand. Content strategy will help you build a relationship with your potential and current customers. And brand relationship is what sells nowadays.

Before building the content strategy, consider:

Your target group

Who are you actually talking to, what content do they like, what do they want to read, listen to, and watch?

The problem you’re going to solve

For example, are you going to help people lose weight and feel better or help moms manage their work/life balance? You have to find a problem which is real and your target group is trying to solve... Or something they didn’t know was a problem yet.

How it’ll be unique

What makes you better than your competitors or different products? If you don't have an answer for that, you will be one of many, and forgotten very soon. Don't waste your time and money. If you’re trying to invent something, know what’s already been invented. Be unique.

Channels where your content will be published

Always pick a channel where your audience is. Don't try to be somewhere and hope your audience will lead you there. Not yet. You can't afford to in the beginning. You have to follow your audience. Also, don't go where you are not able to produce the content. For example: don’t use YouTube if you can’t produce a quality video. Don't go to Instagram if you don't have pretty, eye-catching content. Don't run a blog if you hate writing.

How will you manage the content and publication - who will create the content? Who will publish it? How often? What kind of content are you going to produce? How will you know your content is good? How will you measure that? Who will answer your follower’s questions? Have everything set up before you start creating your content. Be prepared and you will not be surprised.

Channels

Pre-launch page

Launch the web page as soon as possible. Even if you have an unfinished product, let people know that something is going on and explain to them what the startup is about. Don’t forget to collect emails and set up a PPC campaign. You can get dozens of users who will be eager to try your great service. Once you launch your product, you can write them and you can start working with them and expand product awareness among the community to quickly get your first paying customers.

SEO

SEO is a long-term strategy that you shouldn’t forget. If you do SEO well, you will get new clients regularly.

If you like to write or have employees who like to write, SEO can be for you. In this case, get your keyword analysis from an external agency and start writing valuable content on a blog. Remember, that SEO must by also part of your marketing strategy and it’s not a good idea to do it separately.

If you don’t have the people to do it, don't do SEO at this stage because it's expensive. Focus instead on technical SEO to make sure all pages are indexable by search engines like Google. You can start generating content and doing proper SEO in the scaling stage.

PPC

PPC advertising is a good way to get new clients quickly. Prepare to do it if you’re in a competitive environment, since one visitor can cost you more than $10. Set up your campaign as soon as possible, before your launch your MVP, so you're not surprised. We recommend Google Adwords and PPC on Facebook. But keep in mind that these channels must be part of your marketing strategy. Proper PPC campaign setup is not easy and we recommend you hire an experienced professional.

Video

Video is the most popular, engaging, shareable, and easy-to-consume content. It helps people understand a topic far better than written content. It visualises the problem and solves it in a very short time. Books and other literature can provide more information, in greater depth, but take too long to consume. If a picture is worth a thousand words, video is worth a million. It’s 40x more likely to be shared on social media. On the other hand, you have to invest a lot of time and resources to produce something really valuable.

Offline

If you aren’t targeting a specific group of people, you can also try to focus on offline activities. Of course there are still people who watch TV, listen to the radio, use public transportation, or read newspapers. This kind of media has great impact - the numbers are really high - but the problem is, you can't exactly measure it. You can’t directly check how many sales (or different type of your goals) it brought and from which channel they came. You can do some additional activities to measure it, but there are extra costs. It is also much more expensive than online methods. You have to pay for the production of materials (a great TV spot can cost you a fortune) and the media space (which can be also higher than the production). The offline format is usually suggested for building brand awareness.

Also, you can use this one if you have a very specific target group. For example: if you are targeting a group of people who love to go to bars, you can definitely put out posters communicating your product there (it works the best on the toilet - the one place you have a moment of calm). If you provide, for example, a taxi service, you did the perfect targeting for catching people who are too drunk to drive.

Events

Your target group will gather at conferences, meetups, and exhibitions. If you manage to get to those events and present your idea, the community will definitely appreciate it and you’ll get many early adopters who can expand your product to the community. In addition, you will get a lot of ideas for improvement.

There are certainly some opinion leaders in the community whom it’s good to get in touch with and cooperate with, even if you promise them to test and use your product for free.

Social Media

Use social media. Your target audience is there. You only have to find the right one. If you’re targeting millennials, you have to be on many forms of social media. If you are targeting a more specific group, you have to pick the right one. Don't forget, people are going to talk to you and others will see that.

On Facebook you can create your own business page, receive recommendations, feedback (which is very valuable), know your audience better, and target your communication. Facebook is not as friendly to business profiles as it is to personal profiles: you have to pay if you want your audience to see your posts. On the other hand, it provides perfect target options, so you can be sure your communication will find its audience.

Twitter is needed if you have something to say. It is a very fast medium, and if you don't post often, you can be forgotten very soon. You won’t be appearing in your followers’ and other people's feeds. There’s also an option to pay for distributing the content, but the targeting is not so good. You have fewer options than you have on Facebook and you will have a problem reaching the audience you want. Don't forget to use hashtags, so people can find you, while following the topic you are talking about.

Linkedin will help you with hiring, sharing your culture, vision, and B2B communication. It is quite expensive to promote the post or get a premium account, but still, you can do a lot for free. Give it a try and see how the audience likes your content.

Instagram is powerful for those who has something beautiful to share. If you are selling beauty products and services and targeting millennials, Instagram is the right platform for you. The audience there is pretty picky, so be prepare to dedicate extra time and focus on the content you are going to create. It has to be beautiful… or at least very interesting. Buy yourself special equipment for taking and editing photos.

There’s a lot more social media you can use, but check if your audience is there, and what content they’re used to consuming. If you have nothing to say, simply stay back. Don't forget, you have to be ready to chat with your current and potential customers. One chat can help you build your brand and also ruin everything.

Don't forget to educate yourself. Social media is fast-growing and everything around it changes quickly, so don't forget to follow the news about social media and stay updated.

How to set KPI

How can you tell if your communication is working? It’s like trying to lose weight. First you stop eating chocolate and set yourself a goal to lose two lbs by the end of the month and you don't stop until you get there. Then you do some basic exercise and set a goal of four lbs. Then it’s 5 lbs and running to work. You see the progress and know what you’re capable of… and, importantly, you can see the results. It’s the same with setting up KPIs. You won’t see results and progress if you don’t set any goals. Try to set up reachable ones in the beginning, but enough to keep you motivated. The most common for social media are followers, engagement rate, and page rating.

Analytics

How much weight have you lost? Buy a scale and check. What kind of scale does the internet offer for your communication? The most basic tool for measuring and getting information about people coming to your website is Google Analytics. GA works best with Google Tag Manager, which helps you see customers found your website (ppc, banners, social media, emailing…).

Every social media outlet has its own analytics which will help you to know/identify your audience and show you the content they are actually interested in. You can use the paid tools to compare all your social media channels and also compare them with your competitors. For example: Socialbakers.

There are also a few tools on the internet which help you centralize your communication, and share content among all your channels and measure the impact of your communication - a paid service, but definitely worth it. For example: Hubspot.com

Who’s going to do it?

Your strategy is set, you picked the channels where you’ll attract your target audience, you decided which format you’re going to use. One question remains: who is going to execute all this? You can hire a marketing specialist, copywriter, graphic designer, content creator, media planner, web analyst, and others to help you to fill the strategy. Or you can hire an agency. Like everything else, agencies have a lot of pros and cons. First, agencies can be expensive. You’re actually paying not only for people to work on your project, but all their costs as well. On the other hand, they do have the most experience with communication. They are reliable, have thousands of campaigns under their belt, know every platform and audience, and have taken care of so many issues with different customers that they’re ready for almost anything. Because of this, they can save you lot of time, guard you against unforeseen difficulties, and prevent you from spending a lot of money on something that might not work. Or you can hire your own people, but this will also cost you a lot of time and money. You will meet dozens of candidates, more or less senior, with different needs, experiences, and expectations. We suggest you hire marketing people only for key positions in the very beginning. If you see your business is growing and you are able to produce hundreds of videos which bring you a lot of new customers, hire a video guy. However, we suggest you leave this “testing part” to an agency and see how it goes.

3. Building a team

When defining a dream team, you first need to look at the core team. Who are the people who founded the company? Who do you want to constitute the company later on? In the early stages, it’s very important who you pick; it will define your company. Put simply – A players hire A players, and B players hire C players. So be careful who you’re hiring for your team, even at the beginning when you might not have the most options. Consider what your company culture is already like at this point. How do they fit in? How will they contribute toward building the company culture you want to have?

Important positions

At a minimum, you will always need to cover these professions:

  • Product Management
  • UX and Graphic Design
  • Development
  • Sales
  • Marketing
  • Customer support

Moreover, have a look at the team as a whole. Is it homogeneous or does it constitute people with different personalities, backgrounds, and knowledge? The risk of having a team of people who think alike is that they will probably not have the capability to think outside the box and reach new creative solutions.

Usually, in startups, no one does just one job. Are you picking the people who are able to jump on an issue even if it’s not in their job description?

Four considerations when searching for candidates

Entrepreneur John Rampton lists the following:

  1. They have experience in areas that other team members do not.
  2. They can be vouched for—you know them or know someone who knows them.
  3. They are able to start at a limited salary or for a stake in the startup.
  4. They are fans of your product.

After you’ve answered all of these, you have a few options regarding the style of staff you'd like to have. Each has its pros and cons and will vary in different countries. The big question is whether to use employees or freelancers.

Employees

Hire employees if you are planning on keeping people in the company long-term or are forming the core of your team. Companies may feel more secure with a full-time committed employee because better relationships are forged and there's more guarantee the employee is involved in the company's own philosophy.

Freelancers

Get freelancers for jobs that are temporary in terms of time or skill needed for a particular project.Remote work has gotten increasingly popular in the last decade, and 34% of the American workforce is currently freelancing. Companies don’t have to provide benefits to freelancers, but issues can arise with deadlines and scheduling. Also, more people who become freelancers value the freedom of picking their project and people they want to work with. It will increasingly be the companies’ duty to find reasons and justifications for people to be bound to them in a traditional employer-employee manner.

The big differentiator will be interesting culture, cool office space, and the prospect to grow faster than they could by themselves.

In certain countries the difference is blurred or there is a tax benefit to one form of employment or the other. Please refer to your local tax and legal code for more information.

Outsourcing and recruitment agencies

As for outsourcing, it can be especially convenient to make use of talent outside your borders, but there is no guarantee you will get things done the way you want.

And when to use a recruitment agency? Ideally never. When you need a recruitment agency, it is already too late. In an ideal world, your company should be super interesting and everyone would want to work for you.

For smaller companies, the price of a recruiting agency can be prohibitive, therefore tapping your friends and family circle and your social media networks might be the best course of action.

Larger companies are accustomed to using recruitment agencies for staffing purposes as the plethora of skills required is hard to encompass in one HR department.

Recruitment agencies are a good match when you want to quickly staff up, like after a series A, or with rapid growth and enough cash flow to pay for the services.

However you find your people, after the candidate has passed your tests, you should do some form of post-hiring assessment. Creating a kind of structure for advancement from this criteria will also help motivate other team members in the future.

4. Setting Your Pricing Policy

Your strategy for how, how much, and who you will charge depends on two main things: product type, and the nature of the market/competition.

Basic types of market and competition

  • You compete with the traditional, big players as a newcomer. In this situation you will face fierce competition as you have to fight for the clients by lowering your price or having a significantly higher quality of service and product. Aggressive pricing and marketing will be needed and you can even expect heavy losses in the beginning, so you should have a strong capital buffer and a patient investor.
  • You create a specific product, service, or a small niche business. Here it’s important to estimate precisely the number of potential clients and your ability to attract them. You will not face strong competition, so you’ll have higher control over the price, but you have to scale the company to the size and costs at which it is able to survive. So, you can afford higher margin, but should have more focus on cost control.
  • A completely new opportunity, technology, or product, aka “Blue Ocean.” Targeting this kind of market is the most risky but also potentially the most rewarding. If the market potential is high, it will attract not only corporate players, but also lots of other startups. You will have to adapt quickly to the actions of the competition not only with pricing, but also in product development. The difficult thing is balancing pricing to be able to get enough clients, while at the same not dying because of overspending and losing favor with your investors.

Product types which affect pricing and monetization strategy

Digital products

Clients simply pay for a digital service you provide. It’s common that some version of the product might be for free (trial period, freemium, etc.) to attract clients, or you offer different levels of service (free, basic, VIP etc). This needs to be tested in the real world to understand what clients are willing to pay for.

Subscription model

Clients pay a fixed fee and are allowed to use the platform freely for a period of time. This can be done again using service packages of different levels and prices to behaviorally steer the customer spending.

Intermediary platforms

Your product works by matching supply and demand for some product or service. In this case, the platform works on a fee that’s based on the number or value of the transactions. It is very crucial to understand which side of the transaction pays for it - buyer or seller. The cost impact can be the same, but behaviorally one side simply refuses to pay any fee.

5. Writing an Apt Claim

Exhibit A:

Mozart is the greatest composer of all. Beethoven created his music, but the music of Mozart is of such purity and beauty that one feels he merely found it—that it has always existed as part of the inner beauty of the universe waiting to be revealed.

—Albert Einstein

This may seem an odd quote to start with, but if one is permitted a bit of mixing of high and low, I believe a palpable parallel exists. And now Exhibit B:

You cannot create demand. You can only channel demand. Demand is there. Demand is enormous. The bigger the demand, the better your ad is. You are getting in a boat and letting the stream carry you. Just don’t think that you can paddle up against the stream.

—Eugene Schwartz

Copywriting is an art

Is it really so bizarre that arguably the greatest and most influential composer of all time would share a method with the most pioneering adman of the 20th century? Odd that Mozart and Schwartz both found a way to direct the flow of human passion, be it in expression or consumption?

If human beings are creatures of desire and demand, then perhaps there’s a lesson here: great ad copy is not hammered into shape, but pulled as a set of patterns from the already existing flow of demand. This doesn’t make it easy. Not everyone is Mozart. Schwartz himself admitted there were many more innately ingenious copywriters than him. But what he and you can arm yourself with is knowledge about the product.

According to Schwartz, (though it's head-slapping unimpeachable), when writing an individual claim, you have to know as much about the product as humanly possible. For a quick demonstration of the difference between how a bit of research can distinguish lazy boilerplate and slightly less lazy copy, see this succinct article.

This can be furthered by also saying that you have to know as much about the market as possible. Different products ride on top of different streams of desire and demand of a different strength and kind. You have to know what you’re dealing with.

Channeling desire

The startup world updates Schwartz with its own tripartite analogy, but at bottom, it’s the same shtick. Candy vs. vitamin vs. painkiller. These are different kinds of products for different kinds of markets and draw different types of claims. The claim can dictate which your product is. Especially in untested markets, revolutionary products can go from novelties to life-support systems. When channeling pain in a claim, think about the headache-inducing whatever that your product can solve. Then, crucially, don’t just highlight the pain—that won’t lead anywhere— but incorporate the remedy (what you offer) into the claim. Is that a lot to pack into a few words? You bet. It’s going to take some iterating to land on the right claim. But first, you must correctly identify your own product. Again, getting to know the product as much as possible is everything (especially if you’re a hired copywriter and not just the CEO writing the claim yourself). For example, the true tragedy would be having a painkiller on your hands and only marketing it as a candy. The candy of course is addiction, inability to be sated. Perhaps the strongest products actually come from a mixing of these three comestibles. SF venture capitalist Kevin Fong claims an addictive painkiller is the ideal product. Again, your product might be an addictive painkiller, but it’s the great responsibility of the copywriter to forge its identity as such.

CTA

It used to be whole ads, now it’s whole webpages. In the past it was called “direct response advertising”; mail something in, etc. In today’s webpages, if people see the claim on the top and click through the rest, you’re onto something good. A good CTA (call to action) piques curiosity and anticipation and should be more fully considered in the wholistic construction of a landing page along with the claim/slogan and other layout. After all, the admen of yesteryear were limited: they had to get your out the door and to a store or a mailbox with their writing and would’ve killed to be able to put clickable links in their newspaper ads. However, back then people weren’t as deluged with so much information and ads every day, so getting your attention was easier.

The right words

Your slogan should be short and sweet. General and descriptive. Specific but encompassing. The more expansive your company, the more difficult it will be to write an apt claim. One fears the reduction to or heightened focus on a single aspect of the whole company when given the strictures of only a handful of words. If you’re building your startup from the ground up, you maybe won’t have a designated copywriter on your team when creating the first landing pages. Until you go through this process yourself, feel free to laugh at any company’s dumb slogan, but after attempting it yourself—and being brutally honest with whether the words you’ve selected actually fit and actually enhance and sell what you’ve got—then you simply cannot appreciate the Rubik’s cube quality of wrangling one of these haikus out of the ether of unborn slogans.

Levels of market sophistication

Just as books and movies are targeted to certain audiences, when writing a claim you need to consider how much your audience knows; which products have come before. Incorrectly identifying your startup’s market can lead to failure. Have they heard it all before and do they need to really have their paradigm shaken up? Or is your product so new that the market doesn’t even exist yet? How much do you need to “educate” your future user base? This will likely be something you tweak and re-address along the path to building a startup, but this knowledge goes back to the fundamentals of your product brainstorming.

6. Creating an Identity

Everyone has something of a unique style which makes them identifiable. As they say, “clothes make the man.” So too does visual identity make a brand. Think about this while building your startup. Brand and visual identity should be united.

How to pick a name

Your startup’s name is crucial. Aside from a logo, it is the first thing that people will encounter and it will make the first impression. It must be short and memorable. It should also correspond, at least a little, to what your startup does.

What's in a name?

The name also should be unique so it can be easily searchable. You don’t want to choose a common word that will be hard to find through search engines. Also, consider if the domain name for your name is free. A good, memorable domain is a big advantage for your project. If it seems reasonable, you can combine the domain and it’s ending to form the name of your startup. A popular domain with an ending suitable for this purpose is the .io domain, which is used a lot by startups.

The name should also be easily pronounceable by native English speakers. Do not choose local names in your language if you intend your startup to go international.

  • Make sure it's easy to write and pronounce.
  • Try to translate it. (It might mean something inappropriate in other languages).
  • Define how you want to position yourself.
  • Register the unique domain name and sign up for a Web host. Although free Web hosts and portfolio sites are available, having your own domain name lends a bit of credibility to your business or online persona. Don't rely on only your social network page as your primary online profile. Having a domain name ensures that your place on the Web is secure, no matter what online trends come and go, and gives you higher credibility.
  • Let your domain name drive the search. Below are some tools you can utilize:

    • Wordoid - Pick a short and catchy name for your business
    • Naminum - The leading startup, company, and website name generator on the web
    • Domainr - Fast, free, domain name search, short URLs

Logos

  • Mood board

    • Before the whole design process of a logo or a website, meet over a moodboard, or create it yourself. It’s a set of all the artwork that inspires you or might contribute to the final logo design. In terms of colors, shapes, or overall design, it’s the goal of how your logo/site should look. Dozens of styles exist. It’s important that you and the designer are on the same page and compare moodboards with other websites, fonts, colors, pictures, or even architecture, industrial design etc., so you know each other’s vision for the project.
    • Know your target audience and research appropriate visual styles, e.g., you probably wouldn’t use graffiti for a kindergarten logo. Be prepared to answer questions such as: "If your brand was a person, how would that person look?"; “what feelings/emotions should be included?” The designer must know your business really well to prepare a suitable brand.
  • Simplicity is the key

    • Make the appearance understandable, easy to discern, and simple, however it shouldn’t be too vivid or too visible.
  • Logo = A symbol, something that will represent your brand. Logotype = A typographical logo, made only by text and possibly some twist inside the text, without a proper symbol. Unless you’re Nike, you should be okay with using a logotype.
  • Brand Manual vs. logo manual

    • Logo manual is the basic manual you will need – it needs to define colors, fonts, shape, and the construction of a logo. It also defines the rules of how to place the logo somewhere, with safe zone around the logo, minimum size etc. It’s a technical document of how to treat a logo and how it’s made.
    • Brand manual is an extension of a logo manual, where all of the brand materials are defined, such as business cards, letterheads, posters, stickers and anything you want. The purpose of a brand manual is to have all your brand needs in one place and you will no longer need a designer to maintain your brand, you should have everything in there and just change the contents yourself, or at the printing house.
  • Style tiles

    • If a designer is preparing you website design, always get a style tile from him. It’s a definition of all elements used in the design, so you can build your own pages in the future, and they’ll still be consistent with the rest of the design. It defines used fonts and sizes (like H1, H2 etc.), buttons in all stages (hover, click, default), forms, colors, spacings, etc. It’s like a Lego kit you can build a new page from.

Colors

Even changing the saturation or hue of a color can make a big difference in the mood of your design. Plus, colors mean different things in different contexts and countries.

Claim

  • The main claim is about emotions. Don't put: “We are digital product development company and tech investor.” You can use it as an explanatory subtitle, but the main claim is supposed to trigger emotions and be somewhat memorable. Make them intrigued and interested to find out more. Examples: “Launching ideas into reality.” “It's time to tame the chaos of your payroll!” “Make your work a thrilling experience.” “We make your employees happier than ever!” “Where Work Happens” (Slack).
  • Painkiller vs. vitamin vs. candy. There’s a pretty popular school of thought that suggests the best slogans should tap into a potential user’s pain. If not, then even if your product is selling something very useful, it might only be viewed as a vitamin, meaning it doesn’t address acute frustrations. Finally, you might be selling something totally addictive, but which is mostly a diversion—thus, candy.

7. Why You Should Do Content Marketing

Internet and offline media are full of ads. These can be video, radio spots, billboards, CLVs, or PPCs. It doesn’t matter. These are all just saying the same thing: We are the best. There is nothing better than us. Our product will save your life. Use us. BUY US! And they are everywhere. People have started to go blind to classic advertisements. They don’t trust what the ads say anymore. And they don’t even bother to see, read, or listen to anything you try to say. So how can you build your brand? How can you tell people you are here? It is simple: provide best-in-class service or do content marketing.

What is content marketing?

Let's keep the definition of content marketing simple. Content marketing can help you build a relationship with your potential customer and increase your sales chances by proving you are an expert and that you understand what you are doing. Imagine you are going to buy a car. And imagine you are a woman who has no idea how to pick the car. You’ve only decided on the color. So what can you do? Ask a friend? Ask your parents? No! You are a strong independent woman, so you Google it. Imagine you are a company that has just started selling a car. You would like to run your business in a different way. You want to be completely different then the company you bought your car from the last time. Those thieves! They sold you a car without brakes, they didn't know anything about servicing your car, and the guy who sold you the car also talked you into buying a polish which scratched the paint. You will never trust them again and you will never recommend their services to anyone. You've decided to help people in similar situations, not by providing the best in class service, but by helping them avoid going through what you did. You will start your own blog where you will describe how to pick a good car seller. What to check before buying. What to ask the seller. What to be wary of when reading the contract. How to pick a good car. All this will show people that you are a good person. You are not a thief if you show them all the secrets! You know buying a car can be difficult, and you know people can get lost easily. You understand their needs and you won’t laugh at someone who has no idea how this all works. Oh! And you also sell cars?! See? Do you get where am I going? It is simple, right? Show people you understand your field, you have experience, and you understand what they want. Be one of them. It doesn't mean you have to become a professional writer and start to visit creative writing courses… you can do basically anything you want to show you understand your target group. Nike is a great example. They make sports equipment, like running shoes. So they started to support runners. They created Youtube channels with guides for runners. They created a special application for measuring your runs, with a coach who helps you push your limits, achieve your goals, and lets you be the part of the running community. And the best part… everything is free, so anyone can join. Just listen to your target group and help them solve their issues. Be an expert!