When Should You Start To Promote Startup?

That’s a quite popular question. You are afraid of false start, but you don’t want to be late, too. So when is the best time? When should you start to promote startup?

That’s a quite popular question. You are afraid of false start, but you don’t want to be late, too. So when is the best time? When should you start to promote startup?

There is one and the only one answer to this question:

You should start to promote your startup right now.

There is no such a thing as too early to start to promote a startup.

Don’t you have a product yet? Or even a prototype, MVP? Build a landing page and promote it. Start to build your mailing list. Start to collect emails for your email list. Start to collect fans on your social media channels. Start to build an audience.

Why is that? Why start to promote your startup before launching it?

It gives you motivation. It’s much easier to find motivation to work hard on your product if you know that someone’s waiting for it. Someone’s waiting… so you don’t want to disappoint him/her. Someone’s waiting… so there is a place on a market for such a product. There’s someone who thinks it’s worth to wait, worth to try and maybe even pay for it.

It gives you audience. Think about it… you have potential customers; you have their email addresses; and you don’t have the product yet. So once you start – you are able to contact them directly and say – yeah, today is this day. We have something you were waiting for.

What to share if you didn’t start yet?

First of all build a landing page, create an email list and start collecting emails. Collect as many emails as you can, but do not spam them. Do not send them any daily digests. Simply send them Welcome Message, then the most important information (e.g. launch date, what your product is about) and the most important links (e.g. links to your social media channels).

Then make us of startup’s social media channels. Share anything that could interest your audience. For instance:

  • new features
  • behind the scene photos and videos
  • important announcements (did you raise money recently?)
  • counter to the launch day
  • everything what people on social media love (quotes, images, videos)

It’s just like with all the Facebook Pages or Twitter/Instagram/Pinterest Accounts. You build audience there. You build the platform there, so you need to share there anything what could be interesting for your audience.

How did it look like in my case?

Let’s talk about Squidility, that I launched recently.

Unfortunately, I did some mistakes here, but still it was worth to start to promote it before I launched.

I built the simplest landing page ever, with a sign up form (that was adding people to my email list). And I linked to this landing page from my blog. I also did link to this website from some other sites (e.g. once there was some interview with me, I also mentioned that currently I’m also working on Squidility). Nothing more.

After couple of months I had ~600 unique users per month on the website and ~50 subscribers on my email list. Once I started – I could contact them and say: yeah, we just started and you’re the first that we inform about this fact.

Thanks to this – I had my first real users on Day 1.

Mistakes? Social media of course. I’ve created Facebook Page, Twitter Account (later on also Instagram Account) for this brand, but:

  • I did it too late
  • I didn’t promote it at all (I didn’t even link to these pages from the landing page)

I decided that I have to be focused on building a product and not on building an audience on the product’s social media channels (especially that for most of the time I built it alone, so I couldn’t do both). And that was a huge mistake. I should’ve taken more care on Squidility’s social media channels earlier. Even if that would mean that I need to change the launch date.

Now – after launching it, I need to build an audience from scratch there. I lost a couple of months.

  • John Rice

    How do you determine what to share and what to hold back as secret? Let say I have an idea for a new device but I am still in the early phases of building a prototype, how do I promote my innovation without giving away my business plan and opening the door for larger more adept businesses from coming in and stealing my niche while I’m still bogged down by the limitations of personal finances?

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