Startup marketing checklist

In the beginning, the hardest part about building a product is…

Nobody knows you exist.

A typical marketing funnel looks like this:

A marketing funnel for startups and developers

The problem is…

With low traffic, you might be getting zero leads.

Capterra says the average SaaS business converts 7% of website traffic to a lead (usually an email address). But if you only have 10 visitors each month the chances of getting qualified leads is low.

Your struggle is getting enough traffic

You don’t just want traffic, you want qualified traffic. There’s no use in getting referrals from if your product has nothing to do with trucking.

So you need more than just tips on getting more visitors (I’ll get to that in a second).

First, you need to know who you’re serving, what they’re struggling with, and how you help them make progress.

The startup marketing checklist

There’s no use in driving traffic to your website unless you’ve completed the following checklist:

  • Do you have a well-defined target market?
 Who are they?
  • Is your target market reachable online? 
Where do they congregate?
  • Do you know their primary struggle? 
What is it?
  • Do you know how your product helps them make progress? 
How does it help?
  • Do you have product/market fit?
 What proofs do you have? Examples: high NPS score, large number of pre-orders)

You should only invest in marketing if you have solid answers to those questions. Otherwise, you’re wasting your time getting a bunch of traffic that’s never going to convert into sales.

But having those answers will translate into:

  • Blog posts, ads, and other content that empathizes with the customer’s struggle.
  • Landing page copy that perfectly pinpoints the customer’s pain.
  • A call-to-action that pulls the customer towards your solution.
  • A solution that actually satisfies the customer’s desire.

That’s the magic of understanding: who you’re serving, what they’re struggling with, and how you help them make progress.

Alright, I’m ready to get more traffic!

Before you continue, make sure your fundamentals (described above) are solid.

My friend Lars Lofgren, former Head of Growth at Kissmetrics, says:

“Most marketing problems are a product problem.”

Don’t try to use acquisition to outrun a bad product. Fix your product first.

If you’re really ready, get the PDF below. It includes the checklist and a list of great sources of traffic for tech products.

Learn the 3 mistakes developers make

Get this three-email mini-course, and avoid the common mistakes developers make when building products. I'll also send you the Marketing Checklist PDF.

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