Marketing Strategy for Startups

Gear up for success with our proven marketing strategy for startups.

Marketing Strategy for Startups

Gear up for success with our proven marketing strategy for startups.


Marketing Strategy for Startups

In a competitive, global market, marketing is more important than ever. Your idea may elegantly solve a meaningful problem, but if you fail to reach, engage, persuade and convert customers, it’s all for nothing.

At Robot Mascot we’ve supported thousands of founders to develop a robust business case for investment – a fundamental part of which is a marketing strategy for startups and scale-ups.

Founders from all over the world have been supported to raise investment via our global award-winning investor pitch service, PitchReady. As a result of our help in preparing their investment materials, our founders find they are 40 times more likely to raise investment.

This page will tell you exactly what you need to include in your startup marketing plan, so you’re ready to hold up to investor scrutiny.

Jump to the following sections:

Learn more about our approach

Join our complementary fundraising strategy session and learn the methodology behind the best-selling book Investable Entrepreneur, an approach that results in our clients being 40x more likely to raise investment.

Reaching And Converting Customers

If you’re seeking funding, investors want to see that you have a robust marketing plan that shows you understand where your customers are, what they need, and how you might talk to them about your product or service. At Robot Mascot, we help entrepreneurs develop compelling marketing strategies as part of their investor pitch and startup business case.

Investors are all too aware that the second largest killer of businesses after raising investment is their ability to market and sell the product or service they’ve created. They know that as soon as they invest in you, the most likely reason your business will fail is because you cannot efficiently gain customers at scale.

It’s therefore vital that you’re able to deliver investors a believable startup marketing plan. Doing so will reassure them that you’re clear on the task ahead.

When it comes to raising investment, there are two core types of startup marketing plan:

  • Startup go-to-market strategy
  • Scale-up marketing plan

Where you are in your business development will determine which of these plans you might need.

Startup Go-To-Market Strategy

A startup go-to-market strategy is a crucial blueprint that outlines how a newly established business will introduce its products or services to the market and gain a competitive edge. This plan is designed to help startups establish a strong market presence.

A key element of a startup go-to-market plan should also define the unique value proposition that sets the business apart from its competitors, highlighting the key differentiators that will attract and retain customers.

Startups typically operate with limited financial resources, so prudent allocation of budget is crucial to ensure sustainability. When implementing the go-to-market strategy, startups should consider prioritising cost-efficient marketing tactics, such as content marketing and email campaigns, to maximise their online presence while keeping expenses in check. Leveraging partnerships with established businesses with a similar audience can also deliver highly effective, yet cost-efficient strategies for market entry.

Scale-Up Marketing Plan

A scale-up marketing plan is different from a startup go-to-market strategy in several key ways, but primarily because a business at this stage has already established its presence in the market with active users and/or customers. It is therefore seeking rapid growth and expansion of its customer base.

In a scale-up marketing plan, the emphasis shifts from brand introduction to brand expansion and market penetration.

Typically businesses at this stage have a more extensive customer base and market data to draw insights from. This allows for more sophisticated marketing strategies, often involving personalised marketing and segmentation.

The ultimate goal is to reach a point where the business has achieved a reliable and repeatable marketing strategy delivering a consistent and highly efficient return on investment.

While a startup marketing strategy might rely on organic growth and limited budgets, a scale-up marketing plan often leverages a more substantial marketing budget to execute a broader range of marketing channels.

Developing Your Marketing Strategy

Your marketing strategy should be a comprehensive framework that outlines how your startup intends to reach its target audience and promote its products or services. Through our PitchReady service, we will develop a marketing strategy that encompasses a set of coordinated tactics and actions designed to position your brand in the market, attract customers and drive sales.

Stage 1: Brand Strategy

The first step is to nail your brand strategy – the foundation upon which your marketing strategy is built. It defines who you are, what you stand for and how you want to be perceived by your target audience. Your brand influences messaging, tone and visual identity in all marketing efforts. Clarifying your brand vision, mission and positioning ensures consistency in how you communicate and resonate with your audience, fostering trust and loyalty.

Stage 2: Data and Insights

Stage 2 is all about data and insights to understand your competitors and target audience. We will help you analyse competitor strategies to identify gaps and opportunities and use audience insights to deliver investors valuable information about their needs, preferences and behaviours. These insights inform your marketing strategy, helping you tailor messaging, product development and distribution to effectively reach and engage your audience.

Stage 3: Strategy and Tactics

Next, we formulate your marketing strategy followed by the tactics. Your marketing strategy will be the overarching plan that outlines your goals, target audience, value proposition and positioning and guides your marketing tactics, which are the specific actions and campaigns you’ll use to execute the strategy. Your strategy will inform the selection of tactics, ensuring they align with your objectives and deliver a consistent message across various channels.

Stage 4: Channels

Defining where you will execute your marketing efforts is essential. Choose the most relevant and effective channels – from social media to email to advertising – to reach your target audience. This might include digital platforms like social media, email marketing, content marketing, or traditional channels like events and print media. We’ll tailor your channel selection to your audience’s preferences and behaviour, optimising your reach and impact.

Stage 5: Marketing Plan

Finally we will help you create your marketing plan: a detailed roadmap that brings together all the elements from the previous stages. It will outline specific campaigns, timelines, budgets and key performance indicators (KPIs). Your marketing plan serves as a comprehensive guide for implementing your strategy and tactics, ensuring that you have a clear path to achieve your startup’s marketing goals.

Learn more about our approach

Join our complementary fundraising strategy session and learn the methodology behind the best-selling book Investable Entrepreneur, an approach that results in our clients being 40x more likely to raise investment.

What’s In A Startup Marketing Strategy?

A great marketing strategy for a startup seeking investment possesses several key qualities:

Clear understanding of the market

Any great marketing strategy starts with a deep understanding of the target market, including size, demographics, behaviours and pain points. It demonstrates that the startup has thoroughly researched and knows its potential customers.

Unique value proposition (UVP)

A compelling UVP sets the startup apart from its competitors. It should be clearly defined and communicated, emphasising why customers should choose the product or service over alternatives.


The strategy should align with the startup’s business objectives and investment goals, outlining specific, measurable and achievable marketing objectives.

Segmentation and targeting

Effective segmentation and targeting strategies ensure that marketing efforts are focused on the most promising customer segments. Investors want to see that the startup has identified its ideal customers and tailored marketing tactics accordingly.


A great marketing strategy considers how marketing efforts can scale as the business grows by outlining plans for expanding reach, customer acquisition, and revenue generation while maintaining efficiency.

Tactics aligned with strategy

The chosen marketing tactics, whether digital, traditional, or a mix, should align with the overall strategy and target audience.

Customer acquisition plan

Investors want to see a well-defined customer acquisition plan. This includes strategies for lead generation, conversion, and onboarding, as well as an understanding of customer acquisition costs (CAC) and lifetime value (LTV).

Competitive analysis

A thorough competitive analysis shows that the startup is aware of its competitors and has strategies to differentiate itself. It highlights your strengths and weaknesses in comparison to others in the market.

Budget allocation

The strategy outlines a budget allocation plan, detailing how funds will be distributed across marketing channels and initiatives which shows that you’ve considered resource allocation and ROI expectations.

Data-driven approach

A data-driven approach includes plans for collecting and analysing relevant metrics and KPIs. This demonstrates a commitment to measuring the effectiveness of marketing efforts and making data-driven decisions.

Risk mitigation

A great strategy acknowledges potential risks and outlines contingency plans. It shows that the startup is prepared to adapt and pivot if necessary.

Alignment with overall business strategy

The marketing strategy should seamlessly align with the startup’s broader business strategy and objectives, demonstrating that marketing efforts are integral to achieving the company’s vision.

Startup Marketing Strategy FAQ

What is the best marketing strategy for startups?

There is no one-size-fits-all ‘best’ marketing strategy for startups, as the most effective approach depends on various factors, including the industry, target audience, product or service, and available resources.

Read this page and you will get a sense of the process and how a great startup marketing strategy depends on so many specific factors. You might also click to read some of our articles on marketing strategy and marketing plans. See above.

How do I start my startup marketing?

As you embark on marketing your startup, remember that success lies in understanding your audience, providing value and staying adaptable. As per the steps above, begin by thoroughly researching your target market to comprehend their needs and preferences.

  • Craft a compelling value proposition that sets you apart from competitors.
  • Consistently create high-quality, audience-focused content, whether through blog posts, social media, or email marketing, to build trust and engagement.
  • Leverage data and analytics to measure the impact of your efforts and adjust your strategy accordingly.
  • Stay open to trying new tactics, learning from your experiences, and refining your approach as you go.

Building a strong online presence, fostering customer relationships, and delivering value should be at the core of your startup’s marketing strategy.

If you’re looking for investment, you might consider working with an investment readiness agency such as Robot Mascot to help you create your marketing strategy to help you secure funding.

What is a marketing strategy for an early-stage startup?

A marketing strategy for an early-stage startup should be focused on establishing a strong foundation for growth and brand recognition. Explore the many sections above for a more in-depth example of what a startup founder might include in their marketing strategy, from market research to budgeting.

Here are a few very short examples of strategies to help you understand what a startup marketing strategy might be:

Content marketing and blogging

A startup focused on providing digital marketing services creates a blog with informative and actionable articles about online marketing, SEO, and social media. The primary aim is to establish the startup as a trusted industry authority and a go-to resource for businesses seeking digital marketing insights and solutions.

Social media marketing and influencer partnerships

A fashion startup that sells sustainable clothing partners with fashion influencers on Instagram. The strategy involves collaborating with carefully selected influencers to create sponsored posts featuring the clothing, leveraging their style influence and large following to boost brand visibility and credibility within the eco-conscious fashion niche.

Product-led growth

A software-as-a-service (SaaS) startup offers a free version of its software with limited features. By providing a compelling free offering, the strategy aims to attract a broad user base, allowing users to experience the product’s value firsthand and subsequently converting them into paying customers by offering premium features and enhanced functionality.

There’s no reason why you couldn’t use all of these ideas if relevant.

Let’s get you investor ready, and give you the very best chance of securing the vital funds you need to grow.

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