Connect to Your Market
Launching a new product or service can be daunting, especially in an emerging or transforming market. It can seem like there is too much noise and chaos to stand out and be heard, no matter how innovative or valuable your offering. It can be particularly hard for a young company, when resources are scarce and the stakes are high.
Ergo Marketing provides access to market support to startups through marketing and sales mentorship, hands-on assistance as your virtual marketing officer, or by providing tactical project support. I can support you as you establish a place in your market and build momentum. From your first lead customer to global market entry, I can build a solid foundation that lines up with your current resources and objectives, and positions you for the future.
Product Status: Idea and Validation Stage
Funding Level: Seed/Angel (or before)
- Proof of Market/Product Fit
- Business Case (Value Proposition, G2M Plan, Marketing Plan)
- Market Validation and Research
- Value Proposition and Pitch Preparation
- Lead Customer Identification and Management
Product Status: Limited trials and early commercialization
Funding Level: Venture Capital Series A/B
- Revenue Ramp
- Marketing Plan and Go To Market Strategy
- Channel and Sales Development
- Branding, PR and Outreach
Product Status: Stable, new release cycle
Funding: VC Bridge Funding or Profitable
- Channel/Market Expansion
- Product/Market Evolution
- Scale and Repeatability
- Sustainable Growth and Profitability
- Globalization Strategy
A seasoned expert who has been where you are and where you’re headed can make all the difference in helping you spot pitfalls, generate new ways of looking at problems, and be an objective sounding board for your ideas. A good mentor is foremost a good listener, who takes the time to understand what you want to do before providing constructive guidance in the form of new ideas, pointing out gaps in your knowledge, or sharing relevant past experience in ways that help you adjust and plan.
I will take the time to understand your business and provide guidance and direction through regular or on-demand mentoring sessions to discuss challenges and future planning. I will also provide workshops for you and your employees to address specific tasks like value proposition development, go to market strategy, lead development, prospect approach strategy, etc.
It can be hard to attract top level, full time talent while your company is still ramping. You may not yet be able to offer a competitive compensation package or an attractive risk profile at your current stage, and chances are you may not even need a full time marketing executive at this point.
A virtual marketing solution provides you with a senior, steady hand directing or assisting with your marketing for as long as you need it. By providing 1-2 days of marketing leadership per week, I can ensure the marketing side of your business stays focussed and on track, and when you’re ready to bring on full time marketing employees I can facilitate a smooth transition and knowledge transfer.
The startup environment is chaotic and full of time pressures, and often there are spikes of activity that are hard to manage. You may have an approaching deadline or a specific skill set that you need on a temporary basis.
Marketing projects like this might include preparation for upcoming events like investor pitches, trade show participation or analyst briefings. You might need a specific marketing deliverable like a white paper, customer presentation, promotional program or web site development. Or perhaps you need fresh eyes or another pair of hands to assist with research and strategic planning.
I can offer ad hoc expertise and time to develop and deliver what you need to see you through those tough moments.
There are no tricks, magic bullets or shortcuts when it comes to strong, successful marketing. The fundamental principles and methods for establishing value, determining positioning, working within sales cycles, building distribution, understanding and adapting to customer behaviour, communicating effectively, and enacting an overall marketing and sales strategy are solid and reliable. There are new tools in the marketer’s toolkit to be mastered, but the fundamentals haven’t changed substantially.
Knowing how to play the rules of the marketing game is a surprisingly rare skill. Rarer still is knowing when and how to break them. Traditional 4 P marketing, digital and social marketing, big data and analytics in marketing, agile, lean, and responsive marketing, and all the other flavours of marketing that come and go, none of them work if the fundamentals are flawed.
Marketing activity is 90% about execution. Delivering what is needed, when it’s needed. What differentiates competent marketing from great marketing, however, is an underlying layer of deep insight and adaptable strategy. I bring the ability to see the strategic layers of your business.
Whatever your business, the environment is complex and changing. Customers, competitors, channels, direct and tangential trends and influences, geography, government and a dozen other factors make up a complex market ecosystem in which your company will succeed or fail. Marketing planning and execution which is driven by proper insight and understanding of this ecosystem is an edge that allows you to beat the odds and succeed where competitors fail.
The most effective communication, in business as in life, is clear and simple. It is genuine and honest. It’s relevant and interesting.
Too often we lose sight of these simple ideas. Messages become complex and confusing instead of simple. Marketing practices are designed to manipulate instead of engage. We talk about what is interesting to us, not to our customers. It’s easy to fall into these bad habits, and your business pays the price for bad marketing.
You can do better.
Use a Targeted, Precise Approach
Whether your targeted audience is a customer, investor, media representative or other influencer, they go through a similar process before deciding to say “yes”. Understanding where your audience is in the process is the key to keeping them engaged and removing the obstacles that slow or stop them from progressing to the next step. Targeting your marketing investment precisely in the right area provides your best possible ROI.
Identify where the audience is in the cycle, find the objections and gaps, devise solutions that get to the next step.
The customer recognizes a need, opportunity or problem you can help them address.
Ergo will help you better recognize and respond to these needs, or help you educate and persuade potential clients that they need your help.
2. DISCOVERY & AWARENESS
The customer is actively searching for a way to address their needs and becomes aware of alternative solutions.
Ergo will help you stand out and be noticed as a timely, potential solution
3. CONSIDERATION & PREFERENCE
Of all the possible options, the customer develops a feeling of preference for one or more solution.
Ergo will influence and guide their views of you, your competitors and the market to give you a “top-of-mind” advantage during the selection process.
4. EVALUATION & DECISION
The customer begins an evaluation process to narrow the potential solutions down to one.
Ergo will help you win the business by anticipating obstacles and refining your value proposition and business case to the prospect.
5. REVIEW & ASSESS
Once the solution is chosen, the customer continues to evaluate the successful seller through implementation and delivery.
Ergo will assist in leveraging your success into future revenue.
Rely on an Expert
I’ve been marketing B2B and technology companies for 25 years, from startups to multinationals and every stage in between. I am a marketer and business professional who has worked with companies of all sizes across a variety of industries, helping them define their unique value, research and plan their market strategies, create clear and effective messaging,build out and support sales and distribution channels, and establish processes and tools for long term market growth and success.
I have worked with entrepreneurs and startup companies, small and medium sized firms, and global companies including Nortel and Siemens. I have been an independent consultant and freelancer since 2002. I hold an MBA in Marketing and BAs in English and Education.
20+ Years of Experience in Marketing New Products
Marketing Strategy and Planning
Value Propositions and Positioning
Competitive and Market Research
Copywriting and Content Creation
Product Marketing Management
Media, Analyst and Investor Relations
Channel and Distribution Strategy
Sales Training and Support
Training and Mentoring