Startups, Can you really outsource marketing?

Why tech startups fail at marketing? The wait for ‘right man’ is a never-ending wait and founders aren’t interested in doing what they have set out for the marketing role? Why?
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One of the challenges with most of the tech startups is that even though they are damn good at technology, they do fairly mediocre when it comes to marketing their service.

Recently, I was in conversation with a startup and the company while working on brand overhauling is betting on one big thing – hiring a marketing guy. They want to hire a marketing guy to attend all the seminars, they want to hire a marketing guy to market their product, they want to hire a marketing guy to create their social media marketing plan (and everything else).

And while they wait for the ‘perfect match’, founders aren’t interested in doing what they have set out for the marketing role.
Maybe they do not have time to do so, but the final result is that they aren’t marketing their product for a reason which is beyond their control.

Big Fail, if you ask me.

All they want to do is ‘outsource’ (or insource, if you want to call it) the marketing role – strategy that surely works for corporate (heck! that’s why you have so many roles in an org), but not for startups (unless you are heavily heavily funded and have money to $pend).

Sometimes, founders outsource the entire marketing role to SMM (social media marketers)and worry just about the metrics (founders don’t want to fill in the shoes, because it’s not their job!) – another fail.
What’ companies need to realize is that marketing is THE core function of an organization and not a support function (even though you have all the right reasons to not market your product).

What’s your take? Have you encountered similar scenarios, where geeky founders ‘just wait’ for the right man to do their job?

Watch this Seth Godin’s video on why marketing is too important to be left to the marketing department


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