Why documenting your startup journey matters?

startup documenting

Where it all started…

Booming with innovation, Lisbon has become a creative and tech startup hub. I moved here at the end of January to join GetSocial and begin my startup journey. After 10 years in the UK I needed change and more sun on a daily basis.

Portugal seemed like a perfect destination and the job offered exactly the right kind of challenge for me professionally. To own the marketing aspect of the business, grow the team and have enough independence to experiment and make an impact.

GetSocial is a SaaS startup with a great vibe, not a lot of marketing budget and a solid product to facilitate the growth.

I am a huge fan of transparency and personal development, so a decision to start documenting our (marketing) startup journey came very naturally.

Sharing the startup journey…

I want this series to go deep enough and be practical enough so that others can learn from it by observing our journey. I am sure I will learn from it too, that’s the idea.

And hopefully, as part of the startup collective here in Lisbon, but also all over the world, we will be able to start a conversation about how things are done and how they can be done in a more effective, scalable and sustainable way.

When I revisit the posts in the future, I want to be able to remember where we, GetSocial, came from. Once it’s out there written and posted, it should become a well-documented journey.

The idea is not only to focus on the end product of the execution, but the process itself, the hussle of the growth.

People are often afraid of sharing their business ideas and processes. And there is a lot of contradictory advice out there about sharing business insights with others.

Some claim it might be counterproductive as you already feel rewarded while sharing, therefore it lowers your motivation. However, I believe sharing is essential for validation and getting a better understanding of the concepts that are discussed through interactions with others.

And yes, there is always the fear that somebody might steal your idea but trust me, it’s all in bringing it to life.

Aaron Patzer, founder of Mint.com, is a great example of a successful entrepreneur who talks about sharing ideas.

I went around and talked to as many people as I could about this idea. A lot of people, when they come up with a business idea, they keep it inside. They don’t want anybody to “steal” their idea. I think that’s a horrible idea. I think you should tell everyone and anyone your idea, without fear that they’re going to steal it. It’s all in the execution. A good idea is really a dime a dozen.

Hopefully, as we go, you guys will feel like sharing your stories, challenges and successes. I am also planning to focus on inviting a few more Lisbon-based startups to contribute, as I think it’s a great opportunity for collaboration and making the Lisbon startup scene stronger internationally.

And since my field is marketing, there will be a strong focus on our marketing journey & business growth.

lisbon startup journey

Startup marketing: focusing on the process

Marketing is hard because it’s many things at once. It’s the backbone of any business if executed properly. Still, we create many shortcuts to hack the growth, focus on quick, disjointed wins without putting enough attention towards the long-terms goals and the needs of our customers.

There are many articles online on how to do all things marketing, from growth hacking to writing kickass email copy. We’ve all read them tons of times and only sometimes felt like it’s helpful advice that we know how to actually implement.

We’re also all guilty of producing such content. Top 10 best practices without context to hack SEO and rank well on Google. This is not to say that we should stop writing content that drives organic traffic to our websites, but rather to think quality vs quantity, offer opinions & share experiences, personalise the piece so it offers more than the generic tips.

With this in mind, I just want to outline a few things that we’re working on right now and that I will be writing about in more details as we go.

  • Brand experience

“Your brand is what people say about you after you leave the room” –  Jeff Bezos

Our brand experience is my starting point. There is no point in driving higher volumes of traffic to the website if the online experience does not resonate with the audience. That includes brand values, voice and visual identity.

  • Funnel

Marketing should be involved at every stage of the funnel. That’s why I am reviewing the onboarding process, as well as retention messaging, product marketing and not only the top of the funnel.

  • Content Strategy

Establishing a strategy that’s led by the needs of our audience and defined by brand purpose and only supported by a keyword strategy. In simple terms, creating content that matters.

This is only the beginning!

That’s the starting point for sharing our GetSocial journey. From my personal experiences in the startup community in Lisbon to a professional take on marketing efforts, through business growth and product knowledge. To create meaningful insights that we can share with the world and not just noise that does not bring value.

Today’s newsletter from Jay Acunzo caught my attention, especially the following sentence: “My approach to improving my work had stopped improving. I was clinging to an overly simplified concept in order to not face a more complex reality: I need to inform my work with many different perspectives”.

So, I am sharing this post with the world not to get stuck in my own ways, in the already established & proven solutions that might not be the best, but are the safest. When you are challenged, you are asked to become more than you were.

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Agna Poznanska was a Marketing Director at GetSocial.

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