thanpolas // web development as it happens

Hello, I am Thanasis and in my lifetime I have founded and dissolved many startups. Today I am on my fifth venture, working on a SaaS business for the past two years, a niche service that offers client-side network diagnostics netscan.co.

Startup Marketing and Exposure

Now you see what I did there? I advertised my company, I got some exposure. Some of you may argue that, hey, you are a B2B company you don't need exposure; and that would be correct. However on the local scale, exposure matters and this is what I want to talk to you about.

There is no doubt that a consumer business needs as much exposure as it can get, so I really don't need to sell that point for this kind of companies, if you indeed are a consumer product and you're not doing everything in your power for exposure you are doing it wrong. The discussion and aim of this article are to talk about the benefits a SaaS, B2B business has by exposing itself to the local community.

As a web developer and founder myself, I understand and relate to the ambition, vision, and world view of a first-time entrepreneur. The world is in your palms, there is nothing that can stop you, you will change the world. The problem here is when you are being so much consumed by this cool-aid that you neglect the environment you are operating on. Either by sheer confidence, or ego, or introversion you choose to turn a blind eye to your surroundings and the great benefits that would get you. Please give me 5 more minutes as I try to explain what you stand to gain by exposing yourself...

Why Startups have an impact on local

Almost everyone at SKGTech works at a startup, either locally or remotely, we care deeply about a thriving ecosystem and startups are the reason why ecosystems exist in the first place.

We understand that if any startup company in Thessaloniki makes it, and by 'makes it' we mean either an acquisition or (who knows) even IPO, then that fact will be the spark to ignite a true startup ecosystem. So it's in everyone's best interest to see new startups being founded, support them any way we can and push them to success.

What Startups can gain from local exposure

In order to be able to support and push local Startups, one needs to know what startups are in their town, so they can in their turn proudly advertise them to their own network or at meetings with stakeholders. What this can provide you is opportunity.

Having the local community be aware of who you are, what you do and what stage you are in will almost definitely bring you new opportunity manifesting in all sorts of forms... I will name just one before anything else, introductions. Introductions are to entrepreneurs what gasoline is to cars: required to move forward Quote from Romain Serman. Out of that, you will get collaborations, feedback on competition and market, advice from fellow entrepreneurs, new recruits, people with major expertise on the subject might give you a call and why not even some sort of funding opportunities

Essentially you now have an audience, that is already very positively biased towards you and in many cases wants to actively help you.

Are you sure you want to pass on that?

Exposure will also give you access to local talent. Think about this for a moment, if you are to become successful, you will have to grow your team. How many more chances do you have with local developers that already know you versus hearing you for the first time ever? Remember, we are at the local level now, a Startup in Thessaloniki, poaches a Web Developer in Thessaloniki (a small town of a bit more than 1 million residents), wouldn't it be awkward for both of you if the developer wasn't aware of you? It surely would be awkward and surely you'd have virtually no chance of recruiting that developer.

The reason is simple, that web developer already has a job at another startup, they have a front row seat at the game. They know how the game is played and they know that staying sharp and top-level is nothing less than being an athlete, having to train on a daily basis and keep up with everything new.

As such the developer is also very well connected and in one way or another participates in local meetups and is a member of the local tech community. When you come to that developer out of the blue and say we've been working on our product for x amount of time (usually years), the developer will naturally take a skeptical stance against you.

What exactly do you mean by exposure?

The most basic and simple thing you can do is register at our local "Startup Registry" that you can find in the Startups page. That won't take more than 5 minutes of your time and it will expose you to the very highly expert audience of SKGTech.

Next, you need to step up your game and put feet on the ground. Check out the technological and startup events being organized in the city and attend. You can find them at the frontpage of this site at skgtech.io. It doesn't matter what type of event it is, tech or otherwise, just attend and network with the people there. The more you do that the more people will get to know you and trust you.

A very bright example of this kind of tactics is the CEO of Callibrie, a local startup that has been operating for nearly 2 years now. The founder of that company, a non-tech founder that is, participated (and still does) in each and every meetup that was organized, everyone knew him, so when the time came and he got funded and he was ready to scale up operations by creating a new team, the talent flowed naturally to him. That wouldn't be possible if he chose to remain private and be closed to himself.

Another similar case is GoodVidio whose founders are active participants in the community, when they needed to scale up their team they already had the connections, everyone already knew them. So things were a lot easier for them when their company needed to grow.

So if you are Startup in Thessaloniki, or whatever your town is, come forward! We want to help.

This article was originally posted on SKGTech's blog

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