10 Points For Launching Your New Startup Using Social Media

As I speak with many new startup companies about social media, there are some big misconceptions about the what’s and when’s. Probably the biggest misconception I come across is the feeling that they should wait to start their social media marketing efforts until their product, website and/or business is actually completed or launched. This is a very bad idea and I will tell you why.

Startup Social Media StrategyImagine entering a marathon that is about to start in three months. During those three months you did not train at all. In addition to not training, you did not acquire sponsors to cover your massive entry fees, gear or travel expenses. How well do you think you will do once race day comes? That’s why implementing a strategy, building your social community and establishing relationships early is important!

I have put together a list of five Do’s and five Don’ts that should be helpful. These are by no means an exhaustive list, but a few of the tops things to keep you on track.

Do’s

1) Start Early – Develop a clear strategy that includes:

  • Have a clearly defined short and long term goal/objective for your social media marketing.
  • Know the social networks you need to be on and why.
  • Have a clear definition of your target audience.
  • Have a content topic strategy based on the interests of your target audience.
  • Have a community growth strategy.

2) Be Proactive – Establish a sizable, targeted community way before launch. Find your target audience and follow/connect with them. Have a large enough audience built before you need to announce your new product/service.

A good rule of thumb is to have 3-5k followers on Twitter and 500-1000 on your Facebook page as a start before you launch.

3) Be Known for your topics – Establish a content strategy early that creates a reputation for you about your industry. Be known for creating and sharing the content that is of interest to your audience.

4) Scale the hype – Plan to slowly ramp up the hype about your product/service launch over 60-90 days. Use text posts, blog posts, images and video to create interest in what you are doing, without divulging it fully.

5) Relationships – Establish relationships and conversations with your target audience now, so when you launch you have EARNED the right to discuss your new product/service with them.

Don’ts

1) Spam/Pitch/Sell – Don’t mention your followers in spam posts or pitch your company and what you are doing. You must earn the right, through relationships to sell in social media.

2) Hello’s with Links – Don’t mention new followers saying hello and telling them what you do and linking them to your site, blog or page. Cold relationship hello links do not work! More importantly you end up being ignored moving forward.

3) Not following back – Don’t forget to follow your target audience back with they connect with you on Twitter. Not following back basically says “We are too cool to follow you”. This is a big mistake! You can’t engage your audience/prospects if you never see anything THEY post! Don’t try to be cool, be effective.

To be clear, I am not suggesting you follow or friend everyone. I am saying follow, friend and follow back those that are your target audience, and do it immediately (within 24 hours).

4) Not Responding – The biggest don’t I could list is ignoring your audience. When someone in your community shares or comments on something you posted, mentions you, etc., you need to respond right away. Thank them and engage them in conversation, which will build a relationship.

5) Wait – Don’t wait!!

When a new startup waits to long to get their social media marketing efforts on track, they are setting their social media up for failure. Being proactive with a strategy and executing it early, gives you the traction you need to make it effective, but more importantly help your eventual launch gain steam!

Regardless of whether you are a tech startup, becoming a real estate agent, or beginning a new restaurant. Plan, then execute that plan now…

By Robert Caruso
@fondalo
http://fondalo.com
Founder/CEO – Bundle Post

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23 Comments

Filed under Community, Facebook, Fanpage, Followers, Marketing, Relationship, Social content management, Social Media, Social Media Content, Social Media Marketing, Strategy, Twitter, Uncategorized

23 responses to “10 Points For Launching Your New Startup Using Social Media

  1. Could not agree more. I have this conversation often and I advise ~ Do not suffer from eternal failure to launch! Social takes time, energy and did I mention time? ~ to reap rewards. Get out there and get started building those relationships now.
    And do not forget what an excellent source of feedback and crowd sourcing social can be.
    Phaedra

  2. Hey Robert, I think the start early approach is really crucial. Companies spend too much time focussing on features if it’s a product and not building the relationships. It takes time to build strong relationships as you know!

  3. I believe in the “build a community first then launch the product” method. That’s what I want to do, however, it’s the “defining who your target market is” part that has been a stumbling block for me.

  4. Pingback: 10 Points For Launching Your New Startup Using Social Media | Social Media & You | Scoop.it

  5. Excellent reminders for even long-established businesses, Robert, thanks for sharing!

  6. Pingback: 10 Points For Launching Your New Startup Using Social Media | Social Media Article Sharing | Scoop.it

  7. Pingback: 10 Points For Launching Your New Startup Using Social Media | Entrepreneur Bookstore | Scoop.it

  8. Great article…. Our problem is that we are a several months from launch (Christian prayer social network) and people are driving me crazy asking when it will be done. Building an awesome product is HARD and it takes time. People don’t seem to get that. Any suggestions?

    • what you see as driving you crazy, I see as exactly what you want. Use this buzz and interest to get them to sign up with their email address. Many startups pray to have that kind of interest pre-launch. (pun intended)

    • What you may now consider as driving you crazy may also indeed be an opportunity to minister to those who are crying out for the benefits of your product. I agree with Robert, and I trust that what you have is tangible social proof of a genuine desire for your offering in the marketplace.

  9. Pingback: 10 Points For Launching Your New Startup Using Social Media | TheStartupeer on Startups | Scoop.it

  10. Pingback: 10 Points For Launching Your New Startup Using Social Media « My Blog

  11. Excellent advice for any business! Thank you!

  12. Dawn

    I really like your article, but I’m a little confused about the practical application… If I’m going to launch a content site but I haven’t launched it yet, how am I to build an audience of 3-5k without any content to connect them with?

    • Ahhhh great question. You are confused on what a real content strategy should consist of. You should be posting other new, articles and posts that are interesting, relevant and valuable to your audience. About 80% of the time. Only 20% should be about you or your content. Social media marketing is not about you or your stuff, it’s about your audience. If you earn their trust and relationships you then can promote your own stuff.

      So in your case you have time to grow your audience and build relationships by posting content on topics your target audience will be interested in. By the time your site launches and you start creating YOUR content, you will be able to mix it in with what you’re already posting and will have built a community that will be open to clicking and reading it.

  13. Pingback: 10 Points For Launching Your New Startup Using Social Media | Social Media | Branding | SEO | Scoop.it

  14. Anyssa Carruthers

    Not starting to build relationships as soon as you have a solid business concepts that you are positive you are going forward with is one of the biggest mistakes I have seen. Let others help you as you build your business. When one business succeeds in a community , everyone benefits .

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