A Startup’s Greatest Need

  • November 15, 2020

What’s that one thing most startups miss that successful startups don’t? Some thoughts on what to prioritize first in your new startup.

The real need

Most startups think that the most important thing they need to succeed is a great product idea in an underserved market. Or a killer team. Or that first check from an angel or VC investor. Or just an oversized helping of plain luck.

I don’t buy it.

So – what do you need?

The number one need for new startups today is to gain the trust of their intended audience.

Trust is the ultimate modern asset. In 2020, it is the one thing your startup cannot do without.

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Gone are the days of “build it and they will come,” at least when starting a business.

The original way of establishing brand trust only by providing great products and services and trusting the rest to reputation is becoming increasingly difficult. Today, that’s usually not enough.

Now, almost anyone can purchase views for their brand through low-cost, internet-based ad campaigns.

We are all now flooded with a constant stream of brands in nearly every moment of our lives.

To show you what I mean, let’s try a quick experiment. Try to remember a recent dream of yours. Can you remember any specific objects you saw?

The odds are high that at least some of those objects were from a brand you know. If you can think of one example, that company has successfully found ad space – in your subconsciousness.

How’s that for market penetration?

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So amongst that boisterous babble, the brazen bedlam that is become modern branding—

How do get your potential users to notice?

Today here’s the surest answer I know – you can become a domain authority for your intended audience.

Going through this process for your audience proves to them that you understand where they are and have real solutions to their problems.

The opportunity I’m describing is to come to know your target audience and to build a deeper connection than your competition can hope for by just peddling their wares.

If you choose to build your business upon the cornerstone of acquiring the trust of your target audience before they buy, your brand has a chance to play in the big leagues.

The Game is Changed

Becoming a domain authority in the eyes of your audience requires more of you than creating a few great click ads.

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With the abundance of digital content, consumer behavior changed. We purchased less and less based on which brands showed up on the local billboards and more and more based on recommendations, in-person, or digital.

Consumers are doing more research than ever before almost any purchase decision. Companies that don’t show up are losing their business to those that do.

What are customers researching these days? Just about everything!

Pretend something just broke in your house that you don’t already know how to fix. What are you most likely to do next? If you’re like the average person, it will be one of the following:

  1. Search “best [guy to fix it] for [my location]” in Google or YouTube.
  2. Search “how to fix [x],” also on Google or YouTube.

You then look for something helpful, and usually, you find it. If the content you find convinces you that the creator understands your situation, you are likely to follow their recommendation.

If the post recommends a local company, you’re likely to give them a call. If the how-to post recommends a certain tool, your garage now sees a need to expand by one more tool.

Whoever created the helpful article or video has earned a little of your trust.

And advertising changed.

Because of this, the business models that rely on naked push advertising are quickly becoming untenable.

Businesses who understand the need to establish deep brand trust will over time replace those who do not or fail to successfully implement it.

In 2020, the business is with in-house content development is increasingly eating the lunch of its competition that doesn’t.

How to establish trust

There are many ways to capture the attention of your target audience and establish trust. However, just one path is currently dominating the market for the majority of startups.

All you need to do today to gain consumer trust is to publish great content that your users find valuable.

The content you produce should make it easy for your audience to find you. So, you choose the mediums and platforms that your audience are either:

  1. Most likely to be present on regularly
  2. Most likely to be when looking for solutions to their specific problems

To attract the active seekers, you should choose which search engine you will target. Today these are generally either YouTube or Google. Your job is to make sure your content is easily found there.

To attract a more passive audience presence, you need to become active on the right social media platforms and publish useful content there. It should be contextual to the platform as well as targeted. The idea is to attract your ideal customers while limiting the number of people following you that have no real interest in becoming a customer.

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The benefits of domain authority

Most new startups fail to focus on this and struggle because of it. Many that try are so focused on pushing their product that their potential customers are left questioning whether the company truly has their best interests at heart.

Therefore, the startup today that focuses on publishing useful content regularly for their target audience can most easily gain perhaps the greatest competitive advantage they could ask for – real trust.

If you focus on publishing useful content your audience will tell you what they are ready to pay for.

Greatest of all, brands that establish true domain authority have the ultimate freedom to diversify their monetization strategies. Startups are risky businesses, but your audience will keep following you as long as you continue to loyally serve their interests.

So get out there and start publishing. Your audience needs you.