IF YOU HAVE A CONSUMER PRODUCT STARTUP, DON'T WASTE YOUR TIME AND MONEY. LEARN WHAT HAS WORKED SO YOU CAN APPLY IT TO YOUR COMPANY.
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This is a Quora question I was asked. Here is my answer.
Since I do not know who your customer is, I will give you a more general answer that may help you regardless if you sell products to other manufacturers, wholesale for retail sale, direct-to-consumer, or all of the above.
I would search for my direct and substitute competitors and audit their online marketing. You want to focus on the ones that are doing well in their online marketing efforts. SimilarWeb and Alexa will give you traffic counts and SimilarWeb and Follower.net are good for ad research. Competitors with higher traffic counts are probably doing more sales. You will also understand through this research what other sites are driving traffic to your competitors, and what kind of paid advertising they are doing, if any.
Next, analyze your competitors eCommerce pages, the marketing copy on these pages, pricing, promotions and any other relevant activities they are doing to promote sales on their site.
With the information collected above, you want to model what these successful competitors are doing. If they are doing paid advertising, you can find their ads and you might want to model them. If they are advertising on specific websites, you might want to do that. If they have good marketing copy, promotions or any other details on their eCommerce site that appears to be working for them, you want to model that and apply to your business.
The goal is not necessarily to try and reinvent the wheel, but figure out what is already working in the marketplace and model it to apply in your own marketing efforts. In this process, you will also learn a lot about online marketing and build your education from there.
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