15 Effective Strategies to Increase Brand Awareness for Startups


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15 Effective Strategies to Increase Brand Awareness for Startups

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15 Effective Strategies to Increase Brand Awareness for Startups

Looking to boost your startup’s brand awareness? We’ve gathered fifteen strategies from top professionals, including founders, CEOs, and directors, to help you make your mark. From establishing a strong brand connection to adding value in every interaction, discover the tactics these experts swear by.

  • Establish a Strong Brand Connection
  • Collaborate with Influencers
  • Be a Guest on Relevant Podcasts
  • Create Local Networking Events
  • Leverage Guest Blogging
  • Maintain a Consistent Brand Identity
  • Capitalize on Event Partnerships
  • Implement Intelligent Advertising
  • Blend Experiential Marketing with PR
  • Use Content Marketing and Presentations
  • Engage in Online Forums
  • Partner with Local Businesses
  • Share the Founder’s Personal Brand
  • List the Company on Startup Directories
  • Add Value in Every Interaction

Establish a Strong Brand Connection

The most important thing is making sure you have a leg to stand on, and that’s by ensuring you have a strong brand. That’s more than just your logo. Your brand is what will connect you to the consumers you want, and if you’ve done the right work at the start to make sure you know who you are and who they are, your message should resonate with the people you are looking to attract.

A lot of business owners forgo branding efforts in favor of lower-funnel tactics because they’re easier to measure and can drive some immediate results, but branding and building brand awareness is a long game. It’s about forging emotional connections with your target consumers in a way that makes them want to know and support your brand now and in the future.

That foundational work is also going to ensure you’re putting your story out there in the relevant channels where your target currently spends their time, making it much easier to spread the word to your right-fit consumer.

Andrea LebronAndrea Lebron
Co-Founder and Managing Director, Might & Matter

Collaborate with Influencers

One robust strategy to enhance brand awareness for startups, regardless of their industry or target audience, is collaborating with influencers. The power of influencer marketing lies in the trust and rapport these figures have with their followers. By associating with the right influencer, startups can reach a larger, yet targeted, audience authentically.

Drawing from experience as a managing consultant, there was a FinTech startup advised to partner with finance-focused influencers. Through live sessions and interviews, these influencers showcased the startup’s unique solutions. The results? A surge in user engagement and sign-ups in just weeks.

The key is to choose influencers whose audience aligns with the startup’s target demographic, ensuring that the collaboration feels genuine and brings genuine value to both parties.

Niclas TimNiclas Tim
Founder and CEO, spectup

Be a Guest on Relevant Podcasts

Guesting on podcasts, podcast hosts are always looking for interesting and new people to interview on their show, especially if they produce one or more episodes a week. So, to help build brand awareness, start pitching yourself to relevant podcasts. It allows you to use someone else’s platform to get in front of a new audience, without having to “build” that audience from scratch.

It’s truly a win-win-win for everyone. It’s a win for the host because they get insightful, fresh content for their podcast. It’s a win for the start-up because they get their idea in front of a brand-new audience. It’s a win for the audience because they learn about a new perspective and/or solution in the marketplace.

Mariah LiszewskiMariah Liszewski
SEO Consultant and Online Business Educator, Mariah Magazine, LLC

Create Local Networking Events

Running a start-up is challenging enough, and our strategy involves taking on a second project. However, experience has shown that this approach works! During the start-up phases, it’s beneficial to harness your energy and excitement to create a local networking event. This event should attract your ideal customers while remaining relevant to your business: young marketers, Gen-Z business leaders, coding veterans, etc.

Keep the atmosphere casual and friendly—a pizza dinner, an activity bar, or a board game night could work. As the host of each event, your company and brand will be a soft sponsor. This dual role provides numerous opportunities to interact with each individual (at sign-up, or welcome stage, for example), and as the event grows, so too will your brand awareness (and potential for inquiries). The more touch points you have with your attendees, and future attendees, the more you will increase awareness and opportunities for work.

Ryan StoneRyan Stone
Founder and Creative Director, Lambda Films

Leverage Guest Blogging

I leveraged guest blogging to assist 10+ North American SaaS and e-commerce startups in increasing their brand awareness. Through in-depth research, my team identified blogs with millions of visitors who perfectly aligned with their target demographic. The approach focused on addressing the readers’ pain points in the guest posts and offering a solid solution, subtly tying it to their brand.

Over time, this strategy raised their visibility and established them as thought leaders in their sector. As you can guess, the results are much stronger than just brand awareness: it’s a surefire way to generate leads and even the first sales if scaled correctly.

Divyesh BhatasanaDivyesh Bhatasana
Founder and CEO, Jeenam Infotech

Maintain a Consistent Brand Identity

Identify the key characteristics that users love about your brand voice, communications, or product, and stick with them. The external forms of your brand identity, such as the logo, packaging, and products, are just a reflection of your inner policies, principles, and character. If you’ve been using a matter-of-fact and formal tone, resist the temptation to follow the herd and start entertaining your audience, and being jolly and easy-going.

From our experience, once you have a style and brand voice, the audience is very resistant to changes in your product. In 2020, we made a major transition from a light Chrome-extension pop-up to a solid software app in dark tones. We met a lot of resistance initially. But we maintained our standards in terms of service and brand voice, and there’s a certain image of Linked Helper in our public’s minds.

Daria ErinaDaria Erina
Managing Director, Linked Helper

Capitalize on Event Partnerships

One strategy that has been particularly effective in increasing brand awareness is leveraging event partnerships. Startups often struggle with exposure due to limited budgets and reach, but by associating with a prestigious event that aligns with your brand’s ethos, you can quickly gain credibility and attention.

For instance, partnering with high-profile sporting events and luxury lifestyle shows, offering exclusive travel packages or even just a branded lounge. These partnerships allow positioning in front of a captive, relevant audience, thereby enhancing brand recall and even generating immediate leads.

What makes this strategy impactful is the dual advantage of gaining exposure to an audience that is inherently interested in your service while also borrowing some of the event’s prestige and credibility. It’s like a fast-track route to getting your startup in front of eyes that matter, without the heavy lifting of building an audience.

Fahd KhanFahd Khan
Director of Marketing and Technology, JetLevel Aviation

Implement Intelligent Advertising

Intelligent advertising, leveraging the most current industry trends, is an effective strategy to increase brand awareness for startups. As a marketing guy, I have used this strategy with excellent results. The strategy can include devising innovative advertisement methods like hosting events and webinars, promoting educational or suggestive content using an omnichannel strategy, and targeted social media advertisement campaigns with a deep understanding of target audience behavior and needs.

Intelligent advertising approaches, when used strategically, help startups promote and increase brand awareness by attracting and engaging the audience with a strong digital presence. This also helps brands to showcase their expertise as a credible source in the industry—the one that fills the market gaps and resolves customers’ pain points with innovative solutions and resources.

Jehanzaib AhmedJehanzaib Ahmed
Regional Director of Sales and Marketing, Digital Vaults

Blend Experiential Marketing with PR

For startups vying for visibility in a crowded marketplace, blending experiential marketing with public relations offers a potent strategy. Consider the allure of technology-driven installations at industry conferences and events, such as augmented and virtual reality experiences. While an interactive program on an iPad or a comprehensive touchscreen setup might not amass vast footfalls at the event, the true magic lies in the buzz it generates.

Deploying tech-centric, innovative experiences captivates event attendees and captures the media’s attention. The PR garnered from pioneering such avant-garde initiatives amplifies brand visibility exponentially. Journalists and industry influencers are drawn to startups that push the envelope, and their coverage translates to broader brand recognition.

In essence, while the immediate event engagement might be finite, the cascading effects of the associated PR yield substantial, lasting dividends in brand awareness.

Shane McEvoyShane McEvoy
MD, LeadFly

Use Content Marketing and Presentations

For our Yanva startup, we use a content marketing strategy and presentations at various conferences and seminars. The brand should be heard by people; so, in our case, we see the results of such a strategy.

If we consider content marketing, we rely on organic traffic from Google (as we are developing the site), and we also create content (photos, videos, infographics, instructions) that is interesting to our target audience. Conferences and seminars help us attract new customers and partners, while keeping our brand in the minds of people.

Iana VarshavskaIana Varshavska
Digital Marketer and Yoga Therapist, Yanva

Engage in Online Forums

Online forums like Quora and Reddit are effective ways to put your brand name in front of your target audience. These platforms have millions of monthly visitors, with many users asking questions or sharing challenges in your niche.

Brands should consider answering related questions and showcasing how their product can solve the problem. However, it’s important not to over-promote or spam Quora/Reddit with AI-generated fake answers. Here’s how to implement this strategy to increase brand awareness:

  1. Google this: {your niche topic} site:Quora.com or, {your niche topic} site:Reddit.com
  2. List all these question URLs in a Google Sheet.
  3. Share your answer. Ensure that your product is mentioned in a meaningful way and showcase how it works. Adding images or GIFs to help readers visualize is beneficial.

This strategy not only improves your online presence but also generates referral traffic.

Mansi MaruMansi Maru
Freelance Creative Content Writer, UpInFifty

Partner with Local Businesses

A great way to build brand awareness for your startup is to partner with local businesses. The great thing about this is that it allows you to tap into another business’s audience when you’re possibly struggling to build your own audience. And, getting access to another company’s audience means that you also have a brief moment to capture that same level of trust that the other business has built with that audience.

Local businesses (even relatively small ones) can provide you with excellent opportunities if you know which ones are the best for you to partner with and which ones have excellent customer engagement. It’s one of the techniques used when launching a business and is something that is still being used successfully.

Michael MaroneyMichael Maroney
Marketing Director and Lead Biologist, Infinite Outdoors

Share the Founder’s Personal Brand

One effective strategy to boost brand awareness for a startup is to leverage the founder’s personal brand. When the founder becomes a visible and authentic spokesperson for the company, sharing their expertise, insights, and passion within their industry, it not only humanizes the brand but also creates trust and credibility.

Engaging in thought leadership, speaking at industry events, and consistently sharing valuable content on social media platforms can help establish the founder as a respected authority, consequently elevating the startup’s visibility and reputation within its target audience.

Chirayu AkotiyaChirayu Akotiya
Global Head of Marketing, Leena AI

List the Company on Startup Directories

One strategy that truly worked wonders was strategically listing our job board on startup directories like Saashub, ProductHunt, and SourceForge. There are hundreds of directories for startups; it’s not that difficult to find them.

The magic trick is that these directories index comparison pages on Google. This means that when someone searches for an alternative to one of your competitors, your startup appears in Google search results. And there you have it, you’ve increased your brand awareness and made it effortless for potential customers to discover your startup.

Nathan BrunnerNathan Brunner
CEO, Salarship

Add Value in Every Interaction

Brand awareness is not a spontaneous phenomenon; it requires strategic effort to elevate your company’s visibility. The key is to position your brand in settings where it is both welcome and memorable.

To achieve this, aim to be a force for good, consistently adding value in every interaction or platform you engage with. This can manifest in various ways, from content marketing and guest appearances on podcasts to collaborative initiatives with other organizations. By continually offering something of worth, you not only increase brand recognition but also establish a positive reputation in your industry.

Jason VaughtJason Vaught
Director of Content, SmashBrand

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