After a weekend full of Valentine’s, candy hearts, cards, and every brand showing their love, it had me thinking about something I get to see every day – how startups are falling in love with drumbeat marketing.
Before you click off the cliche marketer’s tie-in, think about it, there is no silver bullet to cut through the noise and have your company heard. There are millions of marketing articles about how to do X when it comes to marketing and multiple ways to try out different marketing activities and the need to experiment with all of them. An entire industry is dedicated to offering different marketing services to startups at costs that are either too expensive, inaccessible, laggard, or out-of-touch with what startups need right now. Or, they handle one specific area and leave you siloed. Today, startups don’t have the time or resources to do it all. But you can’t ignore marketing, so what do you do? That’s where drumbeat comes in and makes perfect sense.
We keep (echoing) beating the drum on drumbeat marketing and how you need to spend time on developing a strong messaging and POV, then sharing that POV through multiple owned and earned channels over and over again until you’re blue in the face. It makes you create and deliver continuous micro and long-form content at a feverish pace. It’s not just about producing it and having a certain metric every month to meet… it’s about ensuring it weaves a narrative within the guardrails of the company’s messaging hierarchy that connects with an audience and drives value.
We practice it daily at York IE, and so do our advisory services engagements. The reason why our startups love drumbeat marketing is simple, it works. It does the following:
Sometimes, when your to-do list is out of control, the focus on marketing can get lost. Marketing can fall on the wayside but looking back, this is where you need to focus on it to tell your story, resonate with your audience and establish consistent messaging you want to be known for. Even when you’re working on your startup all day if you’re not telling anyone, how will anyone know what you’re working on? How do you know if it’s resonating? How do you know anyone is even listening? Are you answering the questions that future customers have? What if you never put pen to paper? No one wants to be the blank website when an investor or TechCrunch comes calling. Drumbeat helps you focus first on the messaging, develop a hierarchy and define what your company wants to say. Second, it focuses on how you’re going to say it. Third, it makes you repeat that message so it becomes part of your core strategy and resonates through your business practice.
Getting the first step of a messaging hierarchy starts with content. How are you going to tell this message? How can you take this into multiple forms, retell it and find new ways to promote it. Drumbeat marketing looks at it from all angles and then forces you to tell the story consistently. How can we tell this story across all channels? How are we able to re-use it and re-energize it to relate to today’s larger trends? The most significant part is making sure you don’t fall into a stop & go trap and constantly keep drumming at it.
Celebrates (and makes) big moments
Drumbeat marketing looks internally to tell stories externally. The partnership, customer wins, momentum numbers, new hires, award wins and POVs are all items that fit into drumbeat marketing and help in telling the messaging. It’s a way to consistently tell your story through a new vantage point or with a new exciting update. We at York IE are lucky enough to hear all the wins that our partner startups have and celebrate with them. With drumbeat, we’re encouraging you to share it with the world. To beat the drum. To keep the messaging going with something new to share.
Makes the most out of everything
Marketing can’t be one-and-done. A big launch in February could be just that – a February moment. – a spike in web traffic, one media hit, and one push from your team to promote it. But it can’t stop there. You need to continue to tell that moment down the line and keep reiterating the messaging. The stop and go trap prevents the chance to build the momentum your startup needs to break out of the day-to-day noise. Drumbeat makes sure you make the most of what you’ve created. A long-form piece of content can be a blog series down the line or even an ebook. Quotes in press releases can turn into social content. We love to make the most of everything you’ve already created. No effort is wasted. We’re in it to help tell your story and build your brand equity by telling it over and over again.
While Valentine’s Day might just be once a year, Drumbeat Marketing resonates so well with startups they are falling in love with the practice and learning to beat the drum of their own stories to be heard more than once a year.