Why Digital Marketing Is Essential For Start-Ups

Written by Wellington Ayugi

According to statistics by KNBS (Kenya National Bureau of Statistics), 30% of Kenyans are employed by Start-Ups. They are responsible for the creation of 92% of new jobs every year and contribute 18.4% of GDP in the country. The critical role entrepreneurship plays in our economy can be greatly enhanced by incorporating digital services as part of the customer outreach efforts.

The number of customers who are using online platforms to access information, about goods and services, has been on the rise. The combination of technological advancements and digital empowerment has resulted in higher levels of product awareness among consumers. Thanks to affordable data and cheap devices such as tablets and smartphones, information can be accessed with ease.

The marketing space in Kenya has been changed by the internet. Nowadays, Kenyans have more control and a variety of choices concerning what they purchase. Brands have become more and more visible through digital marketing.

As a start-up, your business must try as much as possible to save money and manage their cash-flow effectively. Digital marketing is a cost-effective way for your business to maximize on your customer base, advertise and grow your brand and products.

With digital marketing, your start-up can reach your target audience on a reasonable budget. It also assists in scaling your business and satisfying the needs of your consumers. 

What is Digital Marketing?

This is also known as online marketing or e-marketing. Digital marketing is the promotion of brands and products via web-based technologies.

How Does Digital Marketing Work?

Digital marketing works by the incorporation of a number of digital marketing tools over the internet in order to communicate specific information to a specific audience. Essentially, it is trying to navigate through the entire internet based market space and into your customer niche.

In addition to this, the concentration span of consumers is limited because there are many other things that they are doing online. So, the competition is not just with other businesses offering similar products but also with the millions of activities that people engage in other the internet.

Many business owners are striving to get the right exposure for their enterprises. It is essential for start-ups to employ the right digital marketing strategies in order to guarantee success.

In order to do so, here is a list of some digital marketing tools that your start-up can use to make your brand more visible:

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO): This is a general type of digital promotion that serves to increase the visibility of your website across search engines by obtaining a high-ranking placement in the search results page of a search engine like Google, Bing, Yahoo and etc.
  • Text messaging: The exponential growth in smartphone usage in the country has enhanced the reliance on SMS (Short message service) for fast and timely information. More and more businesses are adopting this platform to reach target customer groups.
  • Social Media: This is by far the most popular avenue for start-ups to manage their brands. Social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, among others, are an effective way to engaging directly with your customers.
  • Email Marketing: This is the electronic delivery of messages to a target customer group at the right time. The emails are tailored to meet the customer’s needs.
  • PPC (pay per click): This is also called a paid search. With this, you have your business advert run right or above organic search results. 

The above options require your start-up to have a clear and concise digital marketing strategy. The way you use them matters significantly. Without a proper digital marketing strategy in place that focuses each of these marketing options, you will not get any value out of it.

Benefits of Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is essential because:

  1. It enables your start-up to penetrate the market

Digital Marketing offers a wide coverage of consumers through various digital and social media platforms. Therefore, a business owner is able to create links that allow customers to access their website and view their products.

  1. It stimulates conversation around your brand

Posting good content on your web page will generate a continuous cycle of activity, hence attracting more leads and potential customers. 

  1. It is cost-effective

Most start-ups have limited capital and resources. Therefore, in order to cut on unnecessary expenses, generate leads and enhance revenues, it would be wise to adopt digital marketing. The use of analytic data assists you in making wise decisions on how to spend your marketing finances.

  1. It gives your start-up a competitive advantage

Digital marketing enables your business to compete against better and more established competitors. It levels the playing field. 

Kenya is on the path to becoming a digital hub and avoiding digital marketing, is setting your start-up for failure. We live in an era of connected customers. Start-ups have to create products and services that are appealing, local and relevant to customers who are changing the way information is consumed. 

Do you think digital marketing is effective? Please comment below and let us know what you think.

Learn More:

  1. Top five Digital Marketing Tips for SMEs
  2. 8 Digital Marketing Tips for Bootstrapped Startups


About the author

Wellington Ayugi

Wellington Ayugi handles Business Development at Covered and has a passion for personal finance, microfinance, and developments in financial technology