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Hey Startups! Let's Be Friends
By: Dwayne W. Waite Jr.
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So you want to start a business. Excellent! According to several sources, the non-employer business sector rose 1.9% in 2010 alone, which translates into 415,000 new ventures. If you were a part of that 415,000, you're just figuring out how to stay stable and are establishing a cash flow and a customer base. That's awesome. If you're just getting started, we bet you are full of excitement and anxiety.

Yes, we've been there too.

Most startups have a super tight budget, so the 1–5 person crew will try their best to keep costs low. Oftentimes, those costs include marketing and advertising. We can understand why in some cases it can get expensive, especially if you do not know what you're doing. But we're here to tell you that the last thing you should do, when starting your own venture, is worrying about getting the message out.

Gee Ranasinha, CEO of marketing shop Kexino, explains in simple language why startups that want to do their own marketing are picking the wrong path. If marketing and advertising is not your core competency, then why try to do it? It is a comparative disadvantage for a startup to attempt its own marketing when it is better at something else.

Focus on what you're good at, and find good advertising folks to work with.

It's tempting to try to do everything; to be a part of every single role in your startup. Most people try it. Most people fail. Then after failing, startup entrepreneurs try the model of "surrounding themselves" with people who are smarter than they are in certain areas. There is where the success rate begins to climb.

We're not here to tell you how to manage your startup, or if your idea is going to work or not. But here's the point: If it's your startup, then focus on building the best good or service you can, and leave it to the marketing and advertising folks to help you connect to your target audience. There's no need to groom your marketing talents when you can find a skilled advertising professional.

AdLand likes startups. It's time to like us back.

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About the Author
Dwayne W. Waite Jr. is partner and principal at JDW: The Charlotte Agency, a marketing and advertising shop in Charlotte, NC. He enjoys consumer behavior, economics, and football.
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