Startups often run into a problem with larger potential clients being wary of working with them due to staff size or even questioning the legitimacy of the company. For these reasons it is important to start building an online presence as this is the first thins most of the companies check out a company that has pitched them.
The right testimonial or even LinkedIn review can make all of the difference as the last thing a company wants to do is lose money due to a startup being a scam or simply not being able to deliver a caliber of work necessary.
Taking an aggressive approach to legitimizing the startup needs to be done as soon as possible. A startup does not want to lose out on a huge client simply because they did not build up their brand. Below are a few tactics that will help legitimize a startup in the eyes of others in the industry.
Put Out Quality Industry Content
Writing for industry publications and turning the company blog into an industry resource both need to be done. This can help showcase knowledge as well as help out with SEO especially if readers frequently link back to the company blog as it adds value to something they are writing whether it is a blog post or comment.
Trying out different types of content is imperative as certain people prefer video to text or even podcasts. This will allow the startup to understand which type of content converts in sales and website traffic after analyzing the data versus the cost to produce the content. Podcasting allows for more in depth discussion on certain topics as well as can be cheap to produce once the proper recording equipment is purchased and hosting subscribed. Understand the strengths and weaknesses of each type of content to assess which will be best for your ultimate goal.
Host a Seminar/Event
Hosting a seminar or industry event can be a great way to legitimize a company. Inviting outside speakers can help increase the number of attendees and sales prospects should be done. Doing this with a promotional brochure or custom invite in a 5 x 7 envelopes can be the personal touch that convinces those invited to attend.
The most important thing about this event is not to make it one giant pitch but rather inform and educate attendees. If this is popular enough this can turn into a regular occurrence especially if it generates sales on a consistent basis. A great name for the event can also help increase attendance so keep this in mind as well.
Create An Efficient Digital Marketing Campaign
Creating the right digital marketing campaign can allow a company to be featured on a publication like that of Forbes. This almost immediately increases the credibility of a business if an established author mentions the company while citing a study or article they have written. Establish the goal of the digital marketing campaign whether it is to increase leads or legitimize the company as both can be done simultaneously.
Be creative when pitching publications and influencers as they often times get multiple pitches per day. This will help increase the open rate of outreach emails as well as the response rate thus making the campaign more efficient.
Staff Should Speak At Events When Invited
When a staff member is invited to speak at an industry event like a tradeshow or conference this should be encouraged. Not only can this help legitimize the company but it can also create sales leads. This is not the time to wing a presentation so allow the appropriate amount of time for staff to prepare to speak at a conference.
A great perspective of the health of an industry can help show attendees where the future of the industry is going. To encourage staff to speak it is important to give them paid time off as well as covering their travel expenses as this is an investment in the company as well as the individual.
Getting Endorsements From Others In Your Industry
Clients that you have worked with giving testimonials to put on the website can be extremely valuable. Most clients are going to be more than willing to write one if asked and if the business relationship is healthy. Those in the industry as well as the contacts of the clients that give testimonials will automatically trust your company due to this endorsement.
This can be on the website as well as social media feeds and can be a piece of content. Allowing others to see what clients truly think of the work that your company does for them can be an attractive quality.
The Final Word!
Legitimizing your business is not going to be easy but it is possible to do in a short period of time. Use the above tactics and watch large clients line up to work with your company!